When Eric Church previewed the Outsiders World Tour for Rolling Stone Country in September, he pledged that each and every performance would be unique. But he likely didn’t envision the show he delivered last night in Salt Lake City. With the bulk of his band and crew knocked down by a stomach flu, Church took the stage alone, with just his guitar in hand.
What followed was a full 19-song set, sometimes with a little help from his guitarists, but mostly Church carrying the evening solo. He did get a big boost, however, from Lzzy Hale, who after opening the concert with her band Halestorm, joined Church for a duet on The Outsiders‘ “That’s Damn Rock & Roll.” Normally a loud, electric rocker, the anthem was stripped down to just the pair’s vocals and some nasty guitar fills. But it lost none of its urgency, especially when Hale let loose with a monster scream near the song’s end. [Watch a video of the performance below.]
During the performance at Salt Lake City’s EnergySolutions Arena, Church addressed the crowd, filling them in on the situation. “Here’s the deal: Yesterday we had the stomach flu strike our band, our crew, everyone. We had no one to hang video, lights, nothing. But I’m still here. I’m still standing,” he said. “We’ve talked about how every show on the Outsiders Tour is different. Well, tonight will be the most different one. Shit, there’s nobody left. It’s just me.”
In addition to experiencing a one-of-a-kind concert, the Salt Lake crowd was also promised a make-up show, on Memorial Day, May 25th. According to a release, fans wishing to attend should keep their physical tickets from last night’s date.
Church, who received four nominations at the upcoming Academy of Country Music Awards, will perform at the Grammy Awards next Sunday, February 8th, where he is also up for four trophies.