Things To Do: Go See Phil Vassar in Phoenix...

Courtesy - Northeast Phoenix Republic

Join Phil Vassar at Toby Keith's I Love this Bar & Grill (8/7).  In addition to penning hits for Tim McGraw and Jo Dee Messina, Phil has made his own mark on the singles charts with such records as "Just Another Day In Paradise" and the rollicking '"Carlene."   A high energy performer, Vassar usually features some wild piano work in the Jerry Lee Lewis tradition in his concerts. 

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This Week on Tour: August 3

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Phil Vassar and the band are out West this week for a trio of shows at Toby Keith's I Love This Bar, starting in Denver, then Phoenix, and closing in Rancho Cucamonga.

Wednesday, August 5: Toby Keith's I Love This Bar - Denver, CO

Denver, heading your way for a mid-week show!

Friday, August 7: Toby Keith's I Love This Bar - Phoenix, AZ

Heading back to Arizona for a Friday night in Phoenix

Saturday, August 8:  - Rancho Cucamonga, CA

Rancho, had so much fun this spring, had to come back again!

August 12: Volunteer Jam - Nashville, TN
Joining Charlie Daniels and his friends for Volunteer Jam '15 to benefit the Journey Home Project.

August 14-15: Nevada Tour

Nevada, heading your way the middle of the month. August 14 at Peppermill Concert Hall in West Wendover and then August 15 at The Railhead at Boulder Station Hotel in Las Vegas.

August 21-22: Illinois Trip

The band will be taking a quick trip through Illinois later this month with stops at the Bloomington Beer Fest (August 21) and the Backwoods Boat Festival (August 22).

Is Phil Vassar Starring in a Three Stooges Remake?

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Courtesy - NashvilleGab

He may as well be, after spending time with these two celebrated comedians!

Phil Vassar actually performed at the Marine Corps Air Station in North Carolina over the weekend, sharing the stage with award-winning comedian Tom Green and Comedy Central stand-up comedian Mark Viera. The event, which was only open to active military duty, gave the guys unfettered discretion to perform as they see fit — which meant Phil covered every inch of the stage, worked up a crazy sweat, and ended up on top of his piano at some point. It also likely meant that Tom Green discussed his “manhood” and Mark Viera dropped an “f-bomb” or forty.

This Week on Tour: July 27

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Phil Vassar and the band open the week with a private show in Wisconsin on Tuesday and then return home to prepare for a 10 day tour through seven cities in six different states, starting Thursday night outside of Knoxville, Tennessee and rolling through Mississippi, Texas, Colorado, Arizona, and California. 

Thursday, July 30: Clayton Center - Maryville, TN

Big Orange Country, heading your way on Thursday night!

Friday, July 31: Neshoba County Fair - Philadelphia, MS

What a way to start the weekend.. Friday night outside under the stars.

Saturday, August 1: Banita Creek Hall - Nacogdoches, TX

Texas, heading your way this weekend!

Sunday, August 2: Dosey Doe Big Barn - The Woodlands, TX

So much fun when we play Dosey Doe.. had to make a return this summer!

August 5-8: Western USA Toby Keith's I Love This Bar Week

Three stops through the Toby Keith's I Love This Bar, starting the 5th in Denver, the 7th in Phoenix, and finishing the 8th in Rancho Cucamonga.

August 14-15: Nevada Weekend

Shows in Wendover at Peppermill Concert Hall and Las Vegas at The Railhead at Boulder Station Hotel.

This Week On Tour: July 20

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Another exciting 3 show week on the schedule for The Phil Vassar #noPHILter 2015 Tour, starting Tuesday night at the Grand Ole Opry, before heading to North Carolina for a private show on Friday and then up to Wisconsin for Country Thunder USA on Saturday. 

Tuesday, July 21: Grand Ole Opry - Nashville, TN

Always a special night at The Opry House!

Saturday, July 25: Country Thunder USA - Twin Lakes, WI

Wisconsin, let's party this weekend.. again! 

July 30: Clayton Center - Maryville, TN

Staying in-state for a trip to eastern Tennessee at the end of the month.

August 1-2: Texas Swing

Texas, we're heading your way at the start of August; the 1st at Banita Creek Hall in Nacogdoches and the 2nd at Dosey Doe in The Woodlands.

August 5-8: Western USA Toby Keith's I Love This Bar Week

Three stops through the Toby Keith's I Love This Bar, starting the 5th in Denver, the 7th in Phoenix, and finishing the 8th in Rancho Cucamonga.

A Hot Show at Indian Ranch with Phil Vassar

Courtesy - New England Country Music

On Sunday, July 19th Phil Vassar brought his piano and his dynamic energy to Indian Ranch in Webster, MA. It was Vassar’s eighth year at the Ranch, but his show was anything but stale. His performance was one you soon won’t forget.

Playing for two hours nonstop, the crowd was treated to twenty-one of Vassar’s many hits. Braving the eighty-five degree plus temperatures, with 75% humidity, Vassar ran onto the stage already pumped up and raring to go. He headed directly to his signature instrument and started playing ‘My Girl.’ ‘In a Real Love,’ a number one hit from his 2004 album, ‘Shakin Not Stirred,’ followed. Vassar has a very unique way of making up his setlists for the NoPHILter 2015 tour, he asks for song requests via Twitter from the audience. First on the request list was, ‘That’s Why I Love You,’ and then ‘Six Pack Summer.’ Before the song, he addressed the crowd. “How’s everybody feeling out here on a Sunday afternoon? Isn’t this great?! Thanks for having us y’all!”

Hopping on top of his piano and swinging his legs, Vassar sang ‘Six Pack Summer’ loud and strong, receiving screams from the audience in agreement to the lyrics from the first verse. “Winter sure was cold and miserable. Cooped up, shut down, baby it was pitiful. Anyhow, it’s over now. We owe to ourselves to have a little fun…” A little fun only touches on the amazing performance Phil put on. It was more like a party with 2,700 of your closest friends, because that is how Vassar makes you feel during a show. Jumping down from the piano and back to the keyboard and before singing his next tune, ‘Bye Bye,’ he stopped to let the crowd know how the song requests were going. “We’ve got a live Twitter going on, we are just taking requests. I like this, just bringing me requests. That way I don’t have to think about it”

‘Carlene,’ Vassar’s debut single, released back in 1999, was sang next. A number three hit for Vassar, and a song that transported him from a guy who writes songs for other artists, to an entertainer singer/songwriter performing his own hits. Continuing on with his performance, as the sweat poured off his forehead, and his shirt drenched in sweat, Vassar never once stopped moving, running, jumping, and interacting with the audience and much to the audiences dismay, he never even stopped for a drink of water!  From one end of the stage to another he ran. Jumping on top of his piano, spinning around and jumping off, all while continuing to sing with excitement and enthusiasm, as if it was the first time he had ever performed the songs. The crowd’s reaction to Phil was constant, screaming, and exuberance, and to some I’m sure, awe.

His personal touch of song requests via Twitter made the intimate aspect of Vassar’s show that much more enjoyable. Such requests, as the one from Tara to Dan wishing him a happy birthday with the song ‘My Next Thirty Years,’ and the one from Anna requesting for ‘Joe and Rosalitta,’ (A perfect song for Phil to show off his extraordinary piano playing skills.) to a request from Fan-o-Phil, to sing ‘For a Little While,’ a hit for Tim McGraw in 1998. Throughout his performance, Phil told us how much he appreciated his fans and Indian Ranch for having him back year after year. “Thanks for always making us feel like family here at Indian Ranch. You guys are the best absolutely, thank y’all so much.”

Some of the other Vassar hits performed were, ‘Just Another Day in Paradise’, ‘I’m Alright,’ a Jodee Messina hit, ‘Little Red Rodeo,’ a hit song for Collin Ray, ‘Love is a Beautiful Thing,’ and ‘I’ll Take That as a Yes’ (The Hot Tub Song). Vassar also gave us a listen to a new song he just wrote earlier in the day. He introduced this new song with these words, “I like that big ole boat you got. I’m going to sing a song I’ve never done before, because actually I just wrote it. (Laughs) I was out on the boat and I thought, you know I need to write a song about a boat. You know that I write a lot of songs so I thought of this good title called just, ‘Boat Song.’ Brilliant. So let’s get on the boat right now and later I’m gonna have a couple drinks and drive that boat, so guys come on it if you want.”  An invitation I’m sure many fans of Phil Vassar took him up on. Who would pass up the opportunity to take a cruise with the piano man himself?

Phil performed his last song of the afternoon, ‘Piano Man,’ the song that ends all of Phil’s shows. As always this popular tune, originally sung by Billy Joel, is the epitome of who Phil Vassar is. The chorus was sung loud and clear by the crowd with some encouragement from Phil, although not really needed.  “I want everyone to sing along with me right now, ready? Sing us a song you’re the piano man. Sing us a song tonight. Cause we’re all in the mood for a melody, and you’ve got us feeling alright.” Phil Vassar left the stage with another thank you to the crowd for coming out to see him, but it was us who should be thanking him because Vassar never disappoints. He left the audience “feeling alright” and looking forward to next summer when he will return for another amazing concert at Indian Ranch.

Concert recap written by Lorraine Frigoletto, contributing writer for NECM.

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