Country singer Thomas Rhett, currently on tour with special guests Kelsea Ballerini, Russell Dickerson and Ryan Hurd, performs at the Nutter Center in Fairborn on Saturday, March 11. CONTRIBUTED BY CAMERON POWELL
Platinum-selling country singer Thomas Rhett has performed at the Nutter Center in Fairborn in support of Miranda Lambert and Florida-Georgia Line.
However, when the second-generation country singer returns to the venue on Saturday, March 11, it will be on his first headlining tour.
“It has been mind-boggling,” Rhett said recently, speaking over the phone from his Nashville home. “It’s scary the first time you jump in headfirst and say, ‘Alright, we’re going to go put our name on these billboards at these arenas and hope to God they sell enough tickets.’ Before this, all we’d ever done is headline certain festivals and be the middle slot on a tour with Jason Aldean or Luke Bryan.
“You never really can get a read on who your fans are at those shows because they really are there to see the headliner,” Rhett continued. “I pretty much got convinced by management and promoters that this is the year we try it out.”
Country singer Thomas Rhett, currently on tour with special guests Kelsea Ballerini, Russell Dickerson and Ryan Hurd, performs at the Nutter Center in Fairborn on Saturday, March 11. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO JOSEPH LLANES
Rhett, the son of country artist Rhett Akins, was wise to trust his team. The tour started in early March and runs into the fall, with dates in the United States and Europe. Due to brisk advance ticket sales, extra concerts were added before Rhett and his band left Nashville for the first performance.
“The whole tour is pretty much sold out, which is unbelievable,” Rhett said. “I’d never in my life put a date on sale with my name on it that did more than 3,000 tickets so you can understand where my fear came from. It has just blown me away and it’s all due to how big of a year we had in 2016.
“The team picked great singles and I guess the last five years of playing shows and making fans on the way really has paid off,” he continued. “It really has been the most fun I’ve ever had and it’s early in the tour so I can’t wait to see what happens.”
Rhett and his band recently recorded the basic tracks for the follow-up to his platinum selling 2015 album, “Tangled Up.”
“A lot of times we get into the process of a new record and we’re trying to juggle touring, writing and recording and it gets pretty overwhelming,” Rhett said. “We purposely didn’t start the tour until the beginning of February so we could take the entire month of January to make the next record. It’s not done but everything is recorded, which is nice. We hope to have a release later this year.”
NASHVILLE, TN - NOVEMBER 02: Kelsea Ballerini performs onstage at the 50th annual CMA Awards at the Bridgestone Arena on November 2, 2016 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Gustavo Caballero/Getty Images)