The 2018 Country to Country (C2C) festival hit the SSE Hydro in Glasgow over the weekend, with both upcoming and established country music acts playing the main stage
Here are my rankings of each spot in the line-up:
It’s a tough job kicking off a show in the afternoon but all three acts totally aced it
- Joint 1st – Midland (Friday), Brett Young (Saturday) and Luke Combs (Sunday)
This spot was unfortunately rather patchy, with only Old Dominion holding my attention
- 1st – Old Dominion (Saturday)
- 2nd – Kip Moore (Sunday)
- 3rd – Margo Price (Friday)
The task of this act is to get the crowd ready for the headliner but just two of the three performances fulfilled the brief
- 1st – Sugarland (Sunday)
- 2nd – Kelsea Ballerini (Saturday)
- 3rd – Emmylou Harris (Friday)
Many people pay big money to see the main act, so the stakes are high for whoever closes the show each night.
For me, ranking the headliners is a tricky one. Tim McGraw – my all-time favourite country star – had previously played just one gig in the UK and his performance that night was outstanding (see Country to Country 2013: something for the cowboy in me). Thrilled that the great man would be coming to our home town, we splashed out on three-day festival passes to ensure really good seats (i.e. where we would see his actual facial expressions rather than just a projection on the big screen).
So, heart says Tim McGraw was number one but head grudgingly concedes that his show with Faith Hill fell short of my (admittedly high) expectations. It was too loud, too slick, too showy for my tastes and there was too much Faith and not enough Tim. Conversely, Kacey Musgraves – despite her sublime vocals and glittery outfit – lacked the oomph required of a festival headliner.
The always brilliant Little Big Town therefore take the crown for their mix of crowd-pleasing original material and thoughtful covers, including a spine-tingling version of Elton John’s Rocket Man as the atmospheric opening number
- 1st – Little Big Town (Friday)
- Joint 2nd – Tim McGraw and Faith Hill (Saturday) and Kacey Musgraves (Sunday)