The country superstar delivered a powerhouse 18-song set
Sara Evans is an undisputed Queen of Country Music. Her talent, vocal range, and comically affable nature were on display Thursday (Feb 17th) at Birchmere.
Taking the stage in waist-high bellbottoms and a flowy gold top that Evans herself referred to as “dangerous,” the 2x-ACM Award winner plowed through four numbers before pausing to address the crowd. She mentioned it was her first time on stage in over four weeks. “I’d play every day if I could get more bookings,” she sheepishly joked. “But my business manager said it will pick up in what they call ‘Q2’ of this year.”
Evans presented a well-defined retrospective of her career. “Back Seat of a Greyhound Bus” from 2003’s Restless was present. As was 2007’s “As If.” She also presented newer music, including “Marquee Sign” from 2017’s Words record. She also included a few tracks of her latest covers-only album, Copy That. But the newest music Evans presented hasn’t even been released yet. She treated fans to a chorus of a song off an upcoming release that — she told the crowd — is expected later this year.
Fan favorites “Born to Fly” and “Suds in a Bucket” had the crowd on their feet. Powerful ballad “I Could Not Ask For More” stopped the show. When her backup singer requested “My Heart Can’t Tell You Know” from 2011’s Stronger, she obliged with an impromptu acoustic verse and a chorus, backed by her guitarist.
Evans introduced some of her numbers with a trademark sense of humor that has kept her beloved since she shot on the scene in the late nineties. Introducing the aforementioned “Marquee Sign,” Evans talked about wanting exes to come with flashing warning signs on their forehead. “When I get to heaven, I am going to ask God why he did not include that as a feature.” The crowd roared.
The Sara Evans show is also a family affair. The apple has not fallen far from the tree, as daughter Olivia Evans joined Mom on stage as a background vocalist. Olivia stepped into the spotlight to lead a rendition of “Tennessee Whiskey,” which earned a standing ovation.
Time has been kind to Sara Evans. Her career took off during the last gasp of breath taken by 90’s country, making her one of the last real stars to come from that era. Bro country took over mainstream airplay in the mid-2000’s. Even still, Evans continued to have success staying true to a traditional country sound.
Time has also been kind to Evans in the present. She delivers album-perfect vocals with her signature flair. Indeed, she really should be booked a whole lot more!