Country Star Alan Jackson's Freight Train Tour at Allstate Arena
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The last date listed for Country Singer Alan Jackson was Saturday May 1, 2010 / 7:00pm.
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Locomotives aren’t much about bluster. They’re more about power, speed, efficiency, rugged beauty, and drive. So is the career of Alan Jackson, which recently passed the 20-year signpost without the slightest stall in sight. The country music superstar cites no particular ulterior motive in naming his new album Freight Train, although he will allow that maybe there’s just the hint of a career metaphor in there. “This title just jumped out at me,” he says. “When you really think about it, man, we’ve been rolling along here for a lot of years, still going like a train.” *
- Momentum: you can’t beat it, and Jackson’s still got it. He’s sold more than 50 million albums and had 34 No. 1 hits—three of those off his last album, 2008’s* Good Time. * As superstars go, he’s one of only a handful of artists who’ve been around for two decades who still regularly top the country chart. And unlike the other veteran smashmakers who can make that claim, he’s the only one who is a true singer/songwriter, penning most of his own material.
Of course, there’s nothing nearly so unusual about his combination of celebrity charisma and artistic craftsmanship when you consider him alongside his truest forebears. “I wouldn’t want to compare myself to anybody,” Jackson says. “But if I was going to say somebody I wanted to be like, of course, the two singer/songwriters in country music that stick out to me are Hank Williams Sr. and Merle Haggard. I don’t know that there are two any better. I just don’t put myself in that category.”
Others might beg to differ, since Jackson’s considerable catalog clearly positions him as a successor to these greats. He’s celebrated the common man in “Little Bitty,” “Where I Come From,” “Little Man,” and “Small Town Southern Man.” He’s spoken to the passing of generations in “Drive (For Daddy Gene).” He’s addressed mortality in “Sissy’s Song.” He’s treated the dream that country music itself represents with respect in “Chasin’ That Neon Rainbow” and satire in “Three Minute Positive Not Too Country Up-tempo Love Song.” He can have hits with songs as heartrendingly meaningful as “Remember When” and hilariously meaningless as “I Still Like Bologna.” He’s spoken for a nation in “Where Were You (When the World Stopped Turning),” and spoken for the nearest barroom in “Don’t Rock the Jukebox.” He may be the only extant country superstar whose honky-tonk poetry can lead you to answer the eternal question, “Are you sure Hank done it this way?,” with an unblinking, “Yup.”