Concert shows that GVSU is a little bit country: Country fans turn out to see country musicians turn up

By Shelby Pendowski

“Are there any country music fans in the house tonight?”

An eruption of ear-piercing screams from Grand Valley State University students, community members and B-93.7 listeners answered the question posed by country musician Sam Hunt. Yes, there were country music fans in the GVSU Fieldhouse.

Spotlight Production’s annual spring concert featuring Hunt, The Henningsens and David Nail attracted a spectrum of flannel button-ups, cowboy boots and southern peaches on Thursday night.

With an on-going chant of “U.S.A., U.S.A., U.S.A.,” the crowd beckoned a variety of songs from Hunt, who is set to release an album in the fall. Hunt played not only his own songs but also popular tunes he created for other country artists such as “Cop Car” by Keith Urban. However, it was the mash-up of classic Garth Brooks, Toby Keith and Allen Jackson that transformed the crowd into a boot-scootin’, boogieing horde.

The soothing set list of The Henningsens allowed for energy saving head bobs before headliner Nail took to the stage. Similar to Hunt, The Henningsens performed not only songs from an album, which is set to release during the summer, but also ballads the band wrote for other country artists. The band, composed of family members, wrote the No. 1 hit “The Way You Lie” performed by The Band Perry.

Many students purchased meet-and-greets with Nail, who said he was grateful for the show following his appearance on the Academy of Country Music Awards on April 6.

“We are excited to be playing again,” Nail said. “(Las Vegas) is a lot of going to functions and things, so it is good to be back on the bus and playing.”

Blue, black and white doesn’t seem to be the only pride pumping through the veins of Lakers, as the sea of fans proved Laker nation also bleeds a bit of country.


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