George Strait’s two-year Cowboy Rides Away Tour kicked off Friday night (Jan. 18) in Lubbock, Texas, and by all accounts it was a powerful, satisfying show for Strait fans–and for George himself. 

“Strait climbed on stage wearing a button-down shirt, traditional Wranglers and a smile as big as Texas,” writes the Lubbock Avalanche Journal‘s William Kerns, and “from beginning to end, he came across as thrilled and appreciative of the colossal turnout” (over 15,000 people).

As Strait himself had described during a interview last fall, his set wasn’t just a ‘greatest hits’ package but, as Kerns, notes, “instead introduc[ed] a number of obvious personal favorites from past albums.” These included “Same Kind of Crazy,” “All My Exes Live in Texas,” “Amarillo by Morning,” and “Troubadour.”

And, of course, the set finished with “The Cowboy Rides Away.”

Martina McBride opened the show (as she will on the entire tour), and as Kerns writes, “she, too, pulled out all the stops” during her “wonderful opening performance.”

The full George Strait set list:

“Here For a Good Time”
“Ocean Front Property”
“Check Yes Or No”
“I Saw God Today”
“Drinkin’ Man”
“A Showman’s Life”
“Love’s Gonna Make It”
“Arkansas Dave”
“80 Proof Bottle of Tear Stopper”
“Honky Tonk Crazy”
“Blame It On Mexico”
“Hit Me In The Heart”
“Marina Del Rey”
“King Of Broken Hearts”
“Where The Sidewalk Ends”
“The Chair”
“How ‘Bout Them Cowgirls”
“Stars On The Water”
“Give It Away”
“Living For The Night”
“Amarillo by Morning”
“Give It All We Got Tonight”
“I’ll Always Remember You”
“Same Kind Of Crazy”
“All My Ex’s Live In Texas”
“Folsom Prison Blues”
“Cowboy Rides Away”

Martina McBride’s setlist:

“When God-Fearin’ Women Get The Blues”
“Wrong Baby Wrong”
“Wrong Again”
“Teenage Daughters”
“I’m Gonna Love You Through It”
“(I Never Promised You A) Rose Garden”
“Heartaches By The Number”
“Wild Angels”
“My Baby Love Me”
“First Cut Is The Deepest”
“Free Fallin'”
“King Of The Road”
“Love’s The Only House”
“This One’s For The Girls”
“A Broken Wing”
“Independence Day”

The Cowboy Rides Tour continues through June and then picks back up in 2014 (see all tour dates).

– Kurt Wolff,


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