Carly Pearce wows at second of two Ryman shows

The newly-minted superstar offered songs and surprises from all three of her albums

Carly Pearce is a force to be reckoned with. That much was obvious during her 90 minute set last night (Thurs, Oct 27th) at the legendary Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, TN. So bright is Pearce’s star, she had to add a second show after her first Ryman date sold out rather quickly.

It was a night not only of music, but of stories. Pearce shared the inspiration behind her song and album, 29, as well as her work with the late producer Busbee. She shared acoustic versions of “Show Me Around” and “Every Little Thing” in his honor.

Dressed in a floor-length pumpkin-colored dress perfect for the crisp Nashville autumn, Pearce opened with her hit “Diamondback” before launching into “You Kissed Me First.” Of course, it would not be a Ryman show without a few surprises.

Without a word, Ronnie Dunn walked out on stage to a rapturous welcome for a rendition of “Cowgirls Don’t Cry.” Pearce let the legend take most of the song, only joining in on the last verse. Later on in the evening, Kelsea Ballerini joined for a rendition of the Chicks’ hit “Cowboy Take Me Away.” Show opening act Mountain High joined Pearce for a mini bluegrass medley.

In the encore, who else but Trisha Yearwood joined Carly Pearce for “How Do I Live?” The pair’s soaring vocals perfectly harmonized on Yearwood’s iconic Con-Air hit.

Pearce closed out her show with the number that has come to be an early signature song for her. “I Hope You’re Happy Now” sent the crowd home fully satisfied that they experienced the breadth of Pearce’s catalogue. In fact, she made a point of highlighting that her Ryman setlist was comprised of numbers from all three of her albums. This is something she was not able to do when she was on the road opening for Kenny Chesney throughout the summer.

Of course, for any show at Ryman Auditorium, the Ryman itself is as much a headliner as anyone on the stage. Pearce acknowledged this, calling the room the “holiest” of country music venues that she could ever hope to play. Throughout the night, it was clear the honor of playing that room as a headliner was not lost on her. And, if the reception of last night’s crowd was any indication, she will be headlining many more iconic rooms — perhaps even the Ryman again soon — for years to come.

Matt Bailey
Matt Bailey

Matt Bailey is podcast producer and writer located in the Northeast. Since 2013, Bailey has produced more than 160 episodes of his own online radio show, Talk For Two. In 2016 alone, he interviewed Kevin Bacon, Crystal Gayle, Bob Barker, and Gilbert Gottfried, among several other stars. As a Correspondent for The Music Universe, his focus is Broadway, country music and concert reviews.