Country music star Eric Church has spent the last five months doubling down – playing each venue on his “Double Down” tour twice and performing two drastically different concerts each stop.
The tour, which kicked off in January, comes to a close Friday and Saturday at the Gorge Amphitheatre.
With six albums, most recently 2018’s “Desperate Man,” under his belt, Church has more than enough material for two nights of music.
Based on recent setlists, here’s a look at some of the songs you can expect to hear during Church’s “Double Down” stops at the Gorge.
“How ’Bout You” - The song that started it all for Church. “How ’Bout You” is the lead single from Church’s debut album “Sinners Like Me.” The song peaked at No. 14 on the Billboard U.S. Hot Country Songs chart. Not too shabby for a newcomer.
“These Boots,” “Pledge Allegiance to the Hag” and “Before She Does” - Speaking of “Sinners Like Me,” Church is not shying away from his first release, dusting off a few deep cuts from his debut record on the “Double Down” tour.
“Mr. Misunderstood” - The title track from Church’s fifth studio album, “Mr. Misunderstood” begins with Church addressing the “weird kid in your high-top shoes/Sitting in the back of the class.” Throughout the song, Church tells “Mr. Misunderstood” about all the great things he’ll one day accomplish. The music video won the Academy of Country Music Award for video of the year in 2016.
“Homeboy” - A similar song, lyrically, to “Mr. Misunderstood,” “Homeboy,” from 2011’s “Chief,” finds Church pleading for his brother to “come on home, boy.” Eagle-eyed fans might notice the music video was filmed at the former Tennessee State Prison, where Church also filmed the video for “Lightning” off “Sinners Like Me.”
“Springsteen” - It’s one thing to title a song after an idol of yours, but it’s a whole other thing when that idol personally writes you a note to tell you how much they enjoy the song. As Church told Billboard, he received a note via Bruce Springsteen’s manager, which mentioned that he and his family are big fans of the song.
“It’s a pretty incredible note,” Church said. “It’s the first time I’ve officially heard from him. I had heard he was a fan of the song, but it’s the first time I officially heard. It means the world to me.”
“Springsteen” was nominated for Grammys for best country song and best country solo performances.
“Desperate Man” - The title track from Church’s latest album will surely make the setlist. As the title implies, the song, which Church wrote with singer/songwriter Ray Wylie Hubbard, is about someone at the point where they’re willing to try anything.
The song also indirectly deals with how Church felt after the mass shooting at the 2017 Route 91 Harvest Festival in Las Vegas and his will to persevere.
“In a situation where there’s desperate times, when things are wrong and hard and difficult and will tear you up – when you’re desperate – you still put one foot in front of the other and try to move forward,” Hubbard told Taste of Country. “No matter how desperate you get, you’ve got to have that sense of hope.”
“Some of It,” “Drowning Man,” “The Snake” and “Higher Wire” - These tunes, also from “Desperate Man,” have been popping up in “Double Down” shows.
Covers - Recent gigs in Los Angeles have featured performances of Creedence Clearwater Revival’s “Fortunate Son,” Merle Haggard’s “I Think I’ll Just Stay Here and Drink,” Warren Zevon’s “Poor Poor Pitiful Me” and Jackson Browne’s “The Load Out” and “Stay.” Church also has performed a medley of tunes like “Sittin’ On the Dock of the Bay,” “Tiny Dancer” and “Piano Man.”
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