Anticipation is building before Garth Brooks takes to the stage at Croke Park tomorrow night to finally fulfill a promise he made to his Irish fans eight years ago.
He once likened the collapse of his 2014 Irish shows to “like a death in the family” and he will eventually bury those spirits at 7:30pm at the prestigious Northside venue.
The Grammy-winning country megastar, 60, landed at Dublin Airport yesterday to prepare for what may be the most important show of his career to date, as he finally wraps up his three-year stadium tour.
He will remain in Kerry during his time in Ireland as he flies up and down for the shows, with the average flight time to Dublin being 45 minutes. He was filmed by a camera crew as he got off his plane as a follow-up documentary and a film about his shows in 2022.
A local source said Irish Independent that he has booked a property within a five minute drive from Kerry Airport in Farranfore whilst enjoying the delights of the kingdom.
Meanwhile, Garth Brooks told superfan Adrian O’Reilly the singer’s music has a special resonance for Irish music lovers. The Portlaoise native has fronted Ireland’s Garth Brooks Experience for the past decade but has long been an admirer of the legendary artist.
“It’s an Irish thing, isn’t it? I’ve learned that over the years. The Irish are very funny – they don’t like big people that much.
“It’s that Irish attitude of ‘who does he think he is?’. But they also don’t like it when you’re too introverted – they just like authenticity.
“And whether it’s real or from years of practice with Garth, he just seems to pull it off. It’s the whole country boy makes up thing. There’s a very fine line with Irish audiences, as they want you to have the madness and entertain them, but when you cross that line of super confidence, it backfires on you.”
He last saw him perform here at the Point Theater, now 3Arena, in 1994.
Mr O’Reilly had tickets for his 1997 concert but never got to see it, which he has always regretted but will be attending his last show on September 17th. But he feels preparation for Brooks’ five big shows has been more muted around the time, given the recent reminder of what happened with “Garthgate.”
“It feels a bit surreal this time. I remember 2014, the hype was hard to describe – everyone went nuts. It’s quieter this time. I think people say, ‘I believe it when I see it.’ Even with a few days left they refuse to get excited in case something shuts down the whole show.”
The Garth superfan loves the narrative aspect of Brooks’ music and said his songs are “not like pop or rock music. Each of his songs has a story to tell.”
Mr O’Reilly will also be playing for Brooks fans himself as he puts on two shows a day at a Dorset Street hotel to get Croker supporters in the party mood.
As for what ticket holders can expect, he reckons Brooks will go all out and “throw the kitchen sink at it.”
For Meath performer Trevor Smith of tribute act Friends in Low Places, this is the first time he’s seen Brooks live. He had Brooks’ stage outfits recreated for his own performances, bought his Stetsons in America, and said Brooks was “just a little different.”
“I’m not obsessed with him. There are a couple of people who go three or four nights – I don’t know if they’re half crazy or not. But for his fans, it will be like Christmas came too soon. A lot of people said they wouldn’t visit again after what happened last time, but tickets were sold out again, so time is a great healer.
“I’m already a fan, but I don’t have a shrine in his house or anything.”
As for why he loves his music, he said he has “just so many hits.” “There are five or six of his songs where you just have to start and the crowd takes over right away,” he said.
https://www.independent.ie/news/garth-brooks-will-throw-the-kitchen-sink-at-it-fans-gear-up-for-croke-park-corker-41970411.html Garth Brooks ‘will throw the kitchen sink at it’ – fans gear up for Croke Park Corker