TVD Live Shots: Keith Urban with Ingrid Andress at the Xfinity Center, 7/22

MANSFIELD, MA | It was a “long, hot summer” night—nearly 90 degrees outside of Boston—for Keith Urban’s “The Speed of Now” world tour at The Xfinity Center, an intimate and energy-packed evening.

Ingrid Andress opened the show with a sweet, sassy enthusiasm, and gave several shout outs to those sitting in the “way back” of the venue, recalling that it wasn’t long ago that she was in the grass seats. No stranger to the Boston area, the Berklee College of Music grad expressed an abundant gratitude to the fans and appreciation to be on the bill with Urban. Andress played her recent singles, including “Wishful Drinking.”

Cheryl Leary and her daughter Allison, of Tiverton, RI, traveled from the Ocean State to see Friday’s show. This would be Leary’s 27th Keith Urban concert, and first Urban show since before the height of the pandemic. “My daughter has been coming with me since she was 13 and I just told her that when I’m elderly, she needs to continue to bring me to see Keith Urban,” said Leary, her smile beaming.

Leary said she would travel anywhere to see Urban, adding that she would soon drive up to Gilford, NH to see him play at the Bank of NH Pavilion, two days later. “I listen to him every day. It’s all about Keith Urban. I’m so excited for the show to start—I can’t wait.”

The Australian-born singer opened the show with “Tumbleweed,” off of his “The Speed of Now Part 1” album. He played for more than 2 hours, and a highlight for many was when Urban got up close and personal with the lawn crowd for a unique second set, atop of a small platform and surrounded by excited fans, during the conclusion “One Too Many.” “You got front row seats guys!” Urban said with a big smile.

Picking up an acoustic guitar, Urban told the crowd, “When I was about 4 years old my dad, who was a drummer, and my mom gave me a ukulele, and they said I could strum it in time with songs off the radio. I couldn’t play any chords so I just did this all day,” he said, strumming in a speedy, but simple rhythm. “So I learned songs like this…” leading into John Denver’s “Thank God I’m a Country Boy.”

Hugging and high fiving fans, Urban seemed to be loving every minute, playing a handful of more songs including “Better Life” and “You’ll Think of Me” from this new perspective. “It sounds like you guys missed this as much as we did.”

INGRID ANDRESS

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