August 2, 2013 in Features

Bryan enjoying ride on road to success

Country entertainer plays the Gorge this weekend
Adrian Gomez Albuquerque Journal, N.M.
 
Associated Press photo

Luke Bryan is one of the featured acts at the Watershed Festival at The Gorge, which kicks off tonight.
(Full-size photo)

If you go

Watershed Festival

Featuring Luke Bryan, Toby Keith, Brad Paisley, Shooter Jennings and more

When: Today-Sunday

Where: Gorge Amphitheatre, 754 Silica Road NW, George, Wash.

Cost: Sold out

Luke Bryan has come quite a ways since his debut in 2007. In that time, Bryan has become a force in country music, even taking home the Entertainer of the Year award at the 2013 Academy of Country Music Awards in April.

That’s just the tip of the iceberg for Bryan.

His latest album, “Spring Break … Here to Party,” became his first album to top the Billboard Top 200 album charts.

He also played the Houston Rodeo, where he headlined the show before 75,000 fans. It was the second-largest crowd in the rodeo’s history.

With the accolades piling up, Bryan balances his professional life with his home life, which includes wife Caroline and sons Bo and Tate.

“I try to make my time in Nashville mean something for the boys,” he said. “It’s a big fun ride for everybody. My wife and I are enjoying life more than ever.” During the ACM Awards, Bryan also took home an award for his work with Jason Aldean and Eric Church for the single “Only Way I Know.”

During the broadcast, which he co-hosted with Blake Shelton, Bryan performed the single “Crash My Party,” which has gone on to become his seventh No. 1 hit and the name of his next album due in stores Aug. 13.

Bryan’s last studio album, “Tailgates & Tanlines,” debuted at No. 1 on the country charts and has been certified platinum.

Bryan says he is looking forward to having “Crash My Party” out to the fans.

“I’m really proud that I’ve got some meatier things on this album,” Bryan said of the balance of songs on his new album. “Nothing is more frustrating to me than putting a song on an album and regret putting it on there.”

Bryan’s current tour is called “Dirt Road Diaries,” and during the spring, it sold out all dates. Before that, he toured with Rascal Flatts, Brad Paisley and Keith Urban during the “CMT on Tour: Luke Bryan Tailgates & Tanlines.” This weekend he is among the headliners at Watershed, the country music festival at the Gorge Amphitheatre, along with Paisley and Toby Keith.

“It’s almost like you’re getting a stamp of approval to go to the next level,” he said. “All those artists that were a part of the CMT Tour have crossed over into a larger level of artists. I’m experiencing it all now, and it’s become bigger than I could have ever wished for.”


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