Luke Bryan plays country with personality
If anyone can be credited with the rise of so-called “bro country,” then Luke Bryan is a prime candidate. But while some of Bryan’s imitators have taken the party-friendly attitude of his music and forgotten the solid craftsmanship and respect for country traditions, Bryan has become a superstar by balancing the various aspects of his sound, expanding the audience for country music while appealing to the genre’s core fans. It helps that Bryan started out as a Nashville songwriter, mastering the fundamentals of country music while penning songs for artists like Travis Tritt and Billy Currington.
Since launching his career as a solo artist, Bryan has regularly topped the country charts, and his hits include “Drunk on You,” “Country Girl (Shake It for Me),” “That’s My Kind of Night” and “Huntin’, Fishin’ and Lovin’ Every Day,” which is from Bryan’s most recent album, 2015’s Kill the Lights, and marked the 14th time he hit No. 1 on Billboard’s Country Airplay chart. It’s easy to detect the themes in Bryan’s songs, but even if he’s singing about beer, trucks and women, he gives each song a level of personality that too many of his peers lack. He’s the kind of guy you’d be happy to call your bro.
MGM Grand, 8 p.m. Dec. 30, $75-$165 plus tax and fee. 800.745.3000 Ticketmaster