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September 25, 2010

Luke Bryan’s farm awareness tour comes to Valdosta

VALDOSTA — Being the son of a peanut farmer in Leesburg, country singer Luke Bryan knows the importance of farms.

That is why Bryan is playing four shows next week on farms, fields, and plantations across Georgia, and one of those stops is Valdosta.

Bryan will be kicking off his “Farm Tour 2010” on Tuesday, Sept. 28, at Coffee Weed Plantation on Ousley Road, located off of Highway 84 between Valdosta and Quitman.

The singer, who had his first No. 1 song with the weather- and agriculture-laced “Rain is a Good Thing” in July, said he grew up in areas just like the ones that he chose to perform in.

“We (also) picked cities that were near colleges, in the college market, and certainly places that I’ve played a lot through the years,” Bryan said in an interview with The Valdosta Daily Times. “We haven’t had an opportunity to come down to play Valdosta in quite a while, so we’re certainly excited about it. (We’re) hoping we get a good crowd down there.”

Bryan is no stranger to playing Valdosta. While he’s been to Wild Adventures opening for the likes of Dierks Bentley, he’s played shows in Valdosta many times, especially at the Mellow Mushroom.

“You know, it was just always fun to be at the Mushroom, and it was just a small bar,” he said. “I always declared it the ‘Hottest Bar in the World,’ especially on them hot Valdosta nights, packed with about 400 or 500 people in that place and the big old pizza oven going on too.’

According to Bryan, the Ousley Road location was picked when he sent several site managers out to scout locations where one of his “Farm Tour 2010” shows could be held.

“I haven’t really seen the site in Valdosta, so I have to trust the people that we sent down there,” Bryan joked.

Bryan is pulling out all the stops for the show.

He said that he’s “doing it all,” bringing out his own generators, portable toilets, and everything.

“We’ll certainly donate money to some local charities and it’s about farmer awareness, but right now we’re just hoping and crossing our fingers that we’ll break even,” Bryan said.

Bryan, who won a CMT Music Award for

Breakthrough Video of the Year for “Do I” and two Academy of Country Music Awards for Top New Solo Vocalist and Top New Artist already this year, is nominated for Best New Artist at the Country Music Association awards that take place in November. The Georgia Southern graduate will compete against fellow Georgians, the Zac Brown Band, for the award.

While Bryan has had his most successful year to date, with his first two singles from his latest album “Doin’ My Thing” being certified Gold, he is already preparing for his next album.

“We’ve already got dates for November to go into the studio, and we’re always constantly working hard ...,” said Bryan, whose new single, “Someone Else Calling You Baby,” was just released to country radio.

But right now, Bryan’s focus is on his Farm Tour. He says that it will take place, come rain or shine.

“I have a song called ‘Rain is a Good Thing,’ but if the weather is horrendous, really bad, (then) we’d have to figure something out. Otherwise, we’ll be rockin’ in the rain if need to be,” he said. “Just know that tickets are on sale, and it should be a fun time. Everybody gets a chance to come out there and get ready to have a good time in the country.”

Bryan’s other stops next week for the Farm Tour include Statesboro, Carrollton, and Macon.

Tickets are $20 and available at www.lukebryan.com, as well as locally at Flip Flops, Pita Pit, Baytree Pizza, Mill Town Groove and Smitty’s Package Store.

QUICK INFO

Who: Luke Bryan

What: Farm Tour 2010

Where: Coffee Weed Plantation, 8033 Ousley Road, Valdosta

When: Tuesday, Sept. 28.

Time: Gates open at 3 p.m. Show starts at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets: $20

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