After country superstar, killer lead guitarist, and Grammy Award winner Brad Paisley headlined a concert at the North Charleston Coliseum last weekend (Sat. March 6), the first bits of news from the show emphasized an unfortunate incident during Paisley's encore in which he tripped and fell on stage during a rendition of the song "Alcohol" (his new album American Saturday Night). After jumping back up from the stage floor, he handed his six-string to a roadie, finished the song, waved good-night to his fans, and walked off-stage on his own.
According to a news release from Paisley's management, he was checked out at a Charleston hospital and released early Sunday morning, suffering from a few nasty bruises.
City Paper sent local songsmith Michael Thompson — a veteran singer/guitarist and a former Best of Charleston readers pick winner — to the Paisley concert to check things out. "Don't know about him busting ass, but I saw him come up without his hat — that's about it," Thompson reported afterward. Apparently, the live music and stage performance left more of an impression than the trip 'n' fall.
Here's more from Thompson:
Justin Moore, the first opener, had a solid act. The band was proficient, but a bit too rock 'n' roll-sounding. His singing drawl was more pronounced than his speaking drawl, which left me to believe it was contrived. But, all-in-all, it was entertaining.
Miranda Lambert's set was impressive. She provided all of her hits, plus a few unknown gems. The crowd definitely appreciated the harder-edged radio singles, but I enjoyed her twang on the country shuffles that would never make it on the air. The vocals were low in the mix, unfortunately, considering most country music is dependent on a story. The high point was her singing "Famous in a Small Town" with the rest of the crowd. Low-point was her bringing out the writer of Jason Aldean's "The Truth" for a feedback-filled acoustic duet.
Brad Paisley was one of the most crowd-friendly acts I've ever seen live. His guitar skills were just as impressive as advertised, but his constant play to the crowd kept me engaged. I was humbled watching him at a nearly constant run between the four microphones set up across the expansive stage — while playing such advanced guitar. His singing was surprisingly good, too, and the quality of the band could only be matched by the enormity of the video and light show. The band broke into trading absolutely ridiculous solos during some of the high points (a low point was the uber-drunk guy that spilled his beer on my foot).
The encore was also a treat, with all three artists coming out and saying thanks to the crowd. They genuinely seemed to appreciate the almost packed house. I wasn't sure about Brad Paisley before Saturday. Now, I'm convinced he is one of country music's greatest ambassadors. Oh, and no one can ever tell me again that Charleston doesn't love country music.