Miranda Lambert at Rogers Arena, 9/29/17
As Coldplay performed at the nearby B.C. Place Stadium, Texan singer-songwriter Miranda Lambert kept Rogers Arena plenty busy and plenty happy with her Highway Vagabond Tour Friday night (Sept. 29). Lambert, dressed in a black long-sleeved dress adorned with teal fringe, was every bit the adorable southern beer-lovin’ songstress we’ve known her to be since she first hit the country top 40 airwaves with her platinum debut album Kerosene in 2005.
There is no question that Lambert sounded amazing, although Friday her physical performance was a little awkward. The country star did not seem entirely comfortable up on the stage when she was dancing around—she wasn’t terrible, just awkward at times. But when she focused on the music, Lambert was lovely. Opening with “Fastest Girl in Town”, Lambert—with her mint green guitar and platinum blonde hair—along with her band sounded like they had jumped straight from the record to the stage. Lambert’s greatest quality is her song writing; from tracks about broken hearts, to road rage, to beer stops, her songs are rich with poetry and relatable musings.
The audience seemed to particularly enjoy “All Kind of Kinds”, and with good reason—it’s one of Lambert’s signature southern comfort songs. The concert focused a great deal on songs from her latest very personal post-Blake-Shelton-divorce-album The Weight of These Wings—songs like “Vice” and Tin Man” cut deep and really draw attention to the singer’s song writing talent. Along with these two truly stunning performances, highlights Friday night included Lambert’s original claim to fame “Kerosene”, “The House That Built Me” “Mama’s Broken Heart” and “Gunpowder & Lead”. It was clear from the audience’s reception that a lot of concertgoers had very personal and possibly nostalgic ties to Lambert’s songs.
The singer herself started to visibly relax as she made her way through the set. The band offered some fantastic musicianship, including stellar banjo and guitar playing, and having a tight band certainly seemed to boost Lambert’s energy. “Bad shit happens to good people,” said Lambert before one of her signature drinking songs. “When bad things happen maybe we drink a little more, maybe we hang out in bars a little more”. Near the end, after fan favourites “Automatic” and “White Liar”, Lambert had a drink in hand and more than a little love for the crowd.
Lambert chose to start off the encore with a dedication to other singer-songwriters and an acoustic rendition of “Tin Man”—possibly one of the most heart-baring songs of her discography. And, in what is a lovely move for a country singer with a fondness for good song writing, the singer closed out the night with a cover of U2’s “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking for”. All in all, despite some stage awkwardness, Lambert came off as vulnerable, fun-loving and deep. It’s clear from her pristine career evolution that her artistic skills are only intensifying.