Hunter Hayes on stage at the Appalachian Fair
I’m sure you’ve heard people say “he is doing what he was born to do”. I think I met the young man that saying was written about-it describes Hunter Hayes perfectly. From the minute Hunter walks out on stage, you know almost immediately that this kid is ‘doing what he was born to do.’ Part of what makes that so true is the fact that Hunter has been doing what he does nearly all of his life.
Hunter started playing the accordion at age 2. It was a gift from his grandmother. By the time he was four he was making local appearances, and appeared on national television. He did the Rosie O’Donnell Show, Maury, and ‘Figure It Out on Nickelodeon. When he was 13, he appeared on the television show America’s Most Talented Kids. Hunter’s Story is on his web site. If you haven’t already read it, you are going to enjoy what you’re reading.
Hunter has a very impressive resume. And the kid has about a gazillion fans who each seem to have their own reason for being the loyal fan they are. What I saw on stage tonight was a very talented musician. He gave the audience as much as he could out of every song that afforded him an opportunity to stand there and play, and not sing–even if it were for just a minute. While he is recognized (by his fans) as a singer, there is a lot more to Hunter than people realize. He plays many instruments, and he is also a talented songwriter. He pretty much showed us tonight that he’s just a well-rounded entertainer.
The first fans I met when I got to the fairgrounds early this afternoon were Julia (top photo, right) and her mom, Stephanie. They traveled more than 400 miles from Jackson, Tenn., to Gray, Tenn., to see Hunter on stage for the first time. Also in the concert audience (estimated at 8,000) at the small, sold-out fair, were a group of teens from nearby cities in both northeast Tennessee and southwest Virginia.
Hunter’s self-titled, debut CD gives us 12 songs, including “Storm Warning” and “Wanted”. Those two songs received a lot of air time on national country radio, and of course he included both of them in his set tonight. From what I heard out of Hunter tonight, I think those two songs are about as country as he gets. I heard a lot of what some people were calling ‘pop’. And, I even heard a lot of what I would have called “rock.’ I am sure with the fan base Hunter has, and the amount of talent he has, we’re going to be hearing a lot more from Hunter Hayes in the future. I’m just really not sure if he is going to stay on the country side of music.
I can now tell you, from personal experience, that if you enjoy watching a young artist, who cares about giving you a great show, has fun doing it, and puts all of his energy, talent, and know-how right out there for everyone to see and enjoy – then you have got to attend a Hunter Hayes concert.
Now that I’ve told you about the show, and about Hunter, I need to apologize to the band. I always include pictures of the band in the articles I write. They are an important part of what makes the show possible. They work hard, and they need to be given the credit they deserve. However, there are no pictures of the band in this post. And, I even need to apologize to Hunter, because the pictures I got of him on stage tonight really aren’t very good. All that has to do with the fans. I watched the young girls, mostly teenagers. I’m not sure why they were at the concert. I guess it was to listen to the music, because I’m sure they did that. But if they went to SEE Hunter perform, there is no way they accomplished that goal. These young girls need to learn that if they spend a little time in their seats, they will get to see the show. And, they will probably enjoy it a whole lot more. Most of the fans did not get to see the show tonight. There was entirely too much standing, pushing and crowding.
I really wish that before the show started tonight, security had made some kind of announcement to ‘please keep the aisles clear’, ‘do not stand on your chairs,’ and ‘enjoy the show.’ I said it on Monday, and I have to say it again. It just isn’t fair to the 85% of the audience, who are having their view blocked during the entire show, by the 15% of the people who insist on standing in their way. Sending out thanks to the security guard who allowed me to stand behind his chair, lean over his shoulder and get at least a few shots worth sharing. And to the little girl (about SIX years old), I say “you’re welcome”…but there was really no reason to thank me. The smile I saw on your face, when I was able to pull you over in front of me so you could get a look at Hunter was all the thanks I needed.
Hunter is a great performer. It was a well though-out show, and I am certain that everyone who heard it, loved what they heard. I just wish a few more of you had been able to see it. And now, even though they aren’t the best concert pictures I’ve ever shared with all of you —here are a few more shots from tonight’s show.
In addition to Hunter’s web site, you can visit his facebook page, and follow him on Twitter @HunterHayes.
Great show, Hunter – thanks!
Tags: accordion, appalachian fair, maury, nearby cities, Northeast Tennessee, rosie o, talented kids