BANGOR, Maine — There was a crisp fall nip to the air Saturday night as Eric Church, opening act for country star Miranda Lambert, took the stage, but that didn’t stop Church and his band from giving Bangor their best.
Although he didn’t look very country with his T-shirt, hoodie sweatshirt and baseball cap, Church and his boys put on an unbelievable performance with songs such as “Hell on the Heart” and “Smoke a Little Smoke” that had the audience on its feet and ready for Lambert to take the stage.
Before her performance, a few lucky ticket holders participated in a meet-and-greet with the award-winning Lambert, but some said they were disappointed in the experience because the artist didn’t appear as if she wanted to be there.
If that was the truth, it didn’t show when Lambert took the stage and belted out hits such as, “White Liar” and “Kerosene” and put on a show to remember.
Raymond and Melissa Robbins of Waldoboro are big Lambert fans and when they heard about the concert, decided to buy tickets and make the trip. It was the first time both had attended a concert in a long time, and they said they were excited to hear their favorite Lambert song, “Gunpowder and Lead.”
Her most successful single to date, Lambert declares in the track that some little girls are made less of sugar and spice and more of combustible substances. It’s common for Lambert to go slightly against the grain in her lyrics and song style, but she says she doesn’t actively try to go against the Music Row grain, although she doesn’t mind if she’s perceived that way.
While “Gunpowder and Lead” was a favorite among many concertgoers, the 14-year-old Dimick twins, Anna and Olivia, of Durham were excited to hear “The House That Built Me.” Their mother brought them for a girls trip to Bangor just to see Lambert.
“It was kind of my idea to do something together,” said the twins’ mother, Kate Dimick.
The girls admitted that their friends were jealous about their trip. This was the second big-name concert for the Dimicks who previously attended a Taylor Swift show.
A crowd estimate wasn’t available from concert officials Saturday night, but estimates among event staff ranged from 8,000 to 10,000.
Out on the street, where crowds usually gather the night of the waterfront concerts to hear the show even if they can’t see the performers, the scene was fairly typical, but police said there hadn’t been any major issues inside or outside of the concert venue.
The final show in the Hollywood Slots Waterfront Concert series is Smackfest on Sunday, Oct. 10 — a daylong event featuring special guests Five Finger Death Punk and Drowning Pool. Gates will open at 10 a.m. and the event also will highlight several local bands that will perform throughout the day before headliner Godsmack takes the stage..