Words & Deeds

This new country star is packing arenas and making chart history. Next stop? Boise

Luke Combs performs at the 2018 CMA Music Festival at Nissan Stadium in June of 2018 in Nashville, Tenn.
Luke Combs performs at the 2018 CMA Music Festival at Nissan Stadium in June of 2018 in Nashville, Tenn. Invision/AP

Sorry, cowboy, nothing to report about that Garth Brooks concert rumor.

But here’s some actual news: The hottest singer on the country charts is coming to the Boise area.

Luke Combs will perform Thursday, Oct. 31, at the Ford Idaho Center in Nampa, with opening acts Morgan Wallen and Jameson Rodgers. Doors to the Halloween-night concert open at 5:30 p.m. Music starts at 7 p.m. Tickets to the show go on sale at 10 a.m. April 5 at ICTickets for $25, $35, $45 and $50 general-admission pit. There also will be four presales, the first being April 2 through Combs’ Bootleggers fan club.

If you’re unfamiliar with Combs, here’s a crash course about the 8-second bull ride he’s been on since, well, 2017. That’s when his full-length major-label debut album, “This One’s For You,” took radio by storm. (Kudos to his publicity team, which compiled the following onslaught of bragging material.)

Combs just became the first artist ever to top all five Billboard country charts simultaneously for multiple weeks: Top Country Albums, Hot Country Songs, Country Airplay, Country Streaming Songs and Country Digital Song Sales. The single “Beautiful Crazy,” which he cowrote, is No. 1 on all four of the song charts.

Combs’ debut album — now certified double platinum — has spent 29 nonconsecutive weeks ranked No. 1 on the Billboard Country Albums chart. It’s the the only country album to surpass 1 million album units in sales last year, and is the most-streamed country album so far this year.

Combs was named Country Artist of the Year at the 2019 iHeartRadio Music Awards and New Artist of the Year at the 52nd annual CMA Awards. He was nominated for Best New Artist at the 61st Grammy Awards and received a CMA Triple Play Award for writing three songs that hit No. 1 in a 12-month span. He’s also nominated for Male Artist of the Year at this year’s CMAs and will perform during the ceremony April 7 on CBS.

The Beer Never Broke My Heart Tour — Combs’ first headlining arena jaunt ever — is selling out major venues everywhere. As in tons of them, including the famed Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Morrison, Colorado. When he last came to Idaho in April of 2018, he sold out the 2,200-capacity Revolution Center in advance.

So what’s the secret? Is it Combs’ Nashville-perfect vocals on hits such as “Beautiful Crazy,” “She Got the Best of Me” and “When It Rains It Pours,” which manage to fuse ’90s-country vibes with a 21st-century dynamic?

Is it also the North Carolina native’s everyman persona?

“I’ve always been a super regular guy,” Combs, 29, explained to Rolling Stone Country. “I think there’s kind of a comfortability with me onstage — and I think my cool factor is not having one. I’m not extra cool or extra different. I’m an honest dude, not trying to be anything other than who I am.”

Whatever the reasons, Combs is as white-hot as things can get on current country radio. And his concert ticket prices are “beautiful crazy” compared to ones you’ll find at a Brooks stadium show — if that ever comes to fruition in Boise, anyway.

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Michael Deeds is an entertainment reporter and columnist at the Idaho Statesman. Since joining the newsroom as an intern in 1991, he has been a sportswriter, features editor and entertainment editor. Deeds also co-hosts “The Other Studio,” a one-hour music show, at 8 p.m. Sundays on 94.9 FM The River.