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JANETMECK
06-21-2006, 07:09 PM
Defintely the concert of the year, it is awesome and very intimate feeling for being a huge venue. Pure magic and the stage in unlike you have ever seen, a master piece.



Sunday, June 18, 2006

Hill, McGraw perform at top of their game
BY KIRA L. SCHLECHTER
Of The Patriot-News

Tim McGraw might do a song called “The Beautiful People,” celebrating life’s ordinary folk, but let’s face it — it was he and his wife, Faith Hill, who were the real beautiful people at Hershey’s Giant Center last night.

In the first of two sold-out nights on their Soul2Soul II tour, the two country superstars began together, singing “Like We Never Loved at All” like they would do on some of their joint numbers — backs to each other, focusing all their attention on the audience. This was not a study of their relationship with each other, but rather, their relationship with their fans — which was as it should be.

Hill, in gray slacks, a black blouse and black sneakers, then took over, McGraw sinking beneath the remarkable, state-of-the-art circular stage, to deliver a set of her biggest hits and many selections from her latest album, “Fireflies.” “Mississippi Girl” was upbeat, as was “Sunshine and Summertime.” Hill is a workmanlike, intimate performer, hardly the diva she’s portrayed as being offstage. And she was in full, rich voice throughout, despite being a bit drowned out by her large band.

A beautifully evocative rendering of the title track, “This Kiss,” and a soulful “Let Me Let Go” led into the wrenching “Stealing Kisses” and a jaunty “The Lucky One.” Hill sat on the step of one of the stage’s four catwalks (which made for the full range of audience interaction) for a gorgeous “Cry a Little,” then took to the middle of the stage for “There Will Come a Day” and the spine-tingling hymn “It is Well with my Soul” with her capable backing singers.

She wrapped up with her smash hit “Breathe” and an effective cover of Janis Joplin’s “Piece of My Heart” before being joined again by McGraw for tracks including “Let’s Make Love.”

Hill set the bar pretty high, but McGraw didn’t let anyone down, kicking off with a playful “Real Good Man” and following up with a poignant “Don’t Take the Girl” (his first No. 1 hit), a chugging “Just to See You Smile,” and a wry “The Cowboy in Me.” She might be the truly great singer of the pair, but he’s got personality to burn and the ability to deliver a sincere, heartfelt song — such as “My Little Girl,” written for his coming film “Flicka,” or “I’ve Got Friends That Do.” It’s obvious he’s tenderhearted.

The couple reunited to finish the show with songs including the traditional country feel of “Shotgun Rider” and an emotional take on Bob Marley’s “No Woman, No Cry,” as interesting a choice as her Joplin turn and one that displayed the pair’s eclectic musical taste.

It was a brilliant performance by two artists at the top of their game — apart or together.

KIRA L. SCHLECHTER: 257-4763

JANETMECK
06-21-2006, 07:14 PM
This happen at the second show the next night.

AHL champs reap rewards
Tuesday, June 20, 2006
BY TIM LEONE,
Of The Patriot-News

The Hershey Bears' victory tour didn't end with Friday's rollicking Calder Cup rally at Giant Center. A bevy of Bears enjoyed an impromptu encore Sunday when country star Tim McGraw invited them onstage at a Giant Center concert. "We came up with the Cup, and everybody stood up and was going nuts," winger Graham Mink said yesterday. McGraw encouraged the players to fan out and interact with the audience, Mink said, so they walked stage extensions and traded high-fives during a stint that lasted about four minutes amid the singing of "I Like It, I Love It." Kris Beech got a stick signed by McGraw that the centerman promptly handed to the crowd.

"It's a rush," Mink said. "It's like addicting. I can definitely see why they do it. It's like scoring a goal, definitely an adrenaline rush.

"When you're up in front of that many people and you're not in your natural environment, it makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand up. It gives you goose bumps. It was unbelievable for Tim McGraw to let us up there. His whole crew and everybody treated us with respect and took care of us. It was a pretty unique experience, and I'll never forget it."

http://www.pennlive.com/sports/patri...250.xml&coll=1

JANETMECK
06-21-2006, 07:25 PM
Philly a hard town to please

BTW they did two sold out shows there and the day of the first show, Tim threw out the first pitch at the Phillies and Mets game. What a moment for Tim, the only two teams Tug ever played with in his career. Tug must of been looking down smiling. Tim was also presented a check from the Phillies organiztion for Tug's foundation.

Faith and Tim's intimacy isn't lost in bigness
By A.D. Amorosi
For The Inquirer

Everything about country superstars Faith Hill and Tim McGraw - the Soul2Soul tour - is big.

The decade-long married couple's two sold-out shows at Wachovia Center: big.

Their staging: big. Think a flashily lit-from-below, in-the-round thing, with arms extended for maximum outreach.

Their drama: big. Like when their smoke-and-fire duets found them sprung from below the stage (the song, "Like We Never Loved Before") with McGraw black-leather-clad. Or when they appeared back-to-back in chairs, stuck behind netting that acted as a projection screen, during "Angry All the Time" or dearly face-to-face through "I Need You."

Or when Tim, alone - the son of late, great Phillies pitcher Tug McGraw - flashed images of his Pop's finest moments on the screens through the sentimental strains of "Live Like You Were Dying."

Hill's voice was big; a muted brassy vocal necessary to leap through the galloping slide guitars and homegirl ruminations of "Mississippi Girl," the neatly compacted complexity of "Sunshine & Summertime," and the slash-and-burn sneer of "This Kiss."

Even Hill's quieter moments - a softly twangy "Fireflies" and the churchy "Let Me Let Go," whose organ whine would make Al Green jealous - were big.

Not a lot of room for anything small in big country.

Until McGraw changed direction.

It's not that Tim's barstool ballads ("Green Grass") and sloppy honky tonkers ("BBQ Stain") were less epic or heavy. McGraw's prairies are as wide as Hill's, evidenced by the big, rocking "I Like It, I Love It."

But alluding to volume through the snake-rattling tangle of eerie fiddles and rangy slides on "Real Good Man" ("Don't drink too much/it makes me loud"), McGraw's voice was a homey, relaxed fit. That swallowed gritty accent McGraw has through even the most immense song - the hillbilly psychedelia of "Cowboy in Me" or velvety gruffness of "Don't Take the Girl" - was a charmer.

No matter how big their individual sound or starshine, warm duets like "It's Your Love" neatly portrayed Hill and McGraw as intimates; a couple cooing cowboy songs in your living room. A big living room.