Staying true to Country Thunder form, yesterday started with a storm that delayed the maingate’s opening. Twin Lakes was estimated to have 4 inches of rain overnight. It flooded the reserved seating area that left some VIPs very unhappy. With the front area of the stage area flooded, Jason Jones and Steel Magnolia were moved to the Frat House tent, which acts as the second stage for the smaller acts. The tent had more benefits than the reserved seating area, which is NOT covered because the rain did cool things down for a bit it, but did not take long before the humidity and heat moved back in.
Charlie Daniels was the first act to take the main stage at Thunder and the 2 feet of water that flooded the area was now dried up. Yes, it was that hot outside! Charlie Daniels even cracked a joked about the cold snap that occurred in the morning hours. It was incredibly hot for the fans, but even worse for the artists onstage. All day we watched the sweat drip off each artist as they were in full garb and costume. I am surprised no one passed out.
After Charlie Daniels Band the day belonged to Zac Brown, literally. Every artist after Charlie was signed to Zac Brown’s label. First was Sonia Leigh who wasn’t the stereo typical female country artist. She’s more of an edgy country with rough vocals. Then Blackberry Smoke hit the stage and they are no strangers to Country Thunder. They are almost a staple of Thunder as they’ve either played the Road House (aka the old Frat House) or on the mainstage. These guys have performed at Country Thunder so many times they’ve earned the opening slot for Zac Brown.
When Zac Brown hit the stage the sun had thankfully set. If you’ve only seen and not heard Zac Brown before you may be under the impression you are about to witness a rock show. He looks like a biker, but then sounds and feels like Jimmy Buffett! It was a bit of a surprise for me as I hadn’t heard his music before. I would classify him under “Chill Country”. It also didn’t take long for fans to inflate their beach balls of all sizes and volley them in the crowd. I stood next to a man, who turned into a 5 year old girl, when his beach ball made it onstage. He couldn’t have been more proud and his friends couldn’t have be more embarrassed. There was a shining moment as Clay Cook took to the runway and stopped one of the huge beach balls and proceeded to sit and lean on it as he rocked out his guitar solo.
What is a better way to end the night than seeing lightning in the sky and knowing tomorrow will be another mud pit again?
Country Thunder Day 2 in Photos:
Charlie Daniels Band:
Zac Brown Band: