Dan + Shay + Minneapolis
by Kailee Thompson
Imagine jumping on a plane to travel half way across the world just to pursue a dream that one in a million ever achieve. Now, imagine being that one in a million. That person is Morgan Evans and Minnesota couldn’t have been happier to welcome the Australian to our state as the opener for Dan + Shay.
Evans doesn’t even have his own band. He creates all the beats by himself and puts the music on a loop board to create an entire song. He is a one-man-show as he sings over the chords to his own hit songs. Evans has been to Minnesota before, but this time, the stage was bigger, the lights were flashier and the energy was higher. He sang his hit songs like “Day Drunk” and “Kiss Somebody” and even a song he wrote for Dylan Scott that became a hit, “Hooked.” Morgan Evans was an amazing opener and set the bar high for the sold-out show.
The two that everyone had been waiting for in a line wrapped outside the Armory, Dan + Shay, took the stage about twenty minutes to nine and their enthusiasm was off the charts. Opening up the show with “Alone Together,” the crowd was already singing at the top of their lungs and bouncing up and down. The first five songs of the set were sung back to back and all consisted of songs from their newest album, including “All To Myself,” “What Keeps You Up at Night,” “Make or Break, and “Stupid Love.”
It is not very often that you go to a concert and the majority of people know every song that the artist sings. It seemed like every person in the Armory was a die-hard Dan + Shay fan. There was not a single song that people were not screaming the words too, even the newer songs that have not been played on the radio. It truly felt that everyone was there for pure love of music. Dan + Shay caught on this and interacted very well with the crowd by jumping into the sea of fans and singing a song right there in general admission.
After the first handful of songs from the new album, the boys threw it back to a popular radio single, “Nothin’ Like You.” While the new songs got people excited, the songs from the start of duo’s career really seemed to resonate with people. When “From the Ground Up” was played shortly after, fans started to get emotional. This was a show that brought people laughter, as well as tears because the music hit them harder than usual.
Dan + Shay completed the first half of the show with three more songs from their newest album before preparing an acoustic set. While they set up, a video played on a screen showing the boys’ journey from becoming partners, signing a record deal, and their music climbing to the top. During their short acoustic session, they created a song about Minneapolis and belted it out to express their love this city. Minneapolis has always been one of their favorite places to perform and last night we gave them many more reasons for them to come back in the future.
The show had awesome graphics that played in the background and it changed up for every song. Some songs had lyric videos so you could sing along if you didn’t know the words that well, one was galaxy theme, and some told stories that related to the words in the song. The set finished with their song “Island Time,” which had palm trees and a sunset in the background to go with the mood of the song. After the song ended, the boys left the stage, but everyone knew it couldn’t be over. They still had some very special songs to play.
A voice came on over the speakers that sounded like a woman who gives you instructions about keeping your hands inside at all times during a roller-coaster ride. The voice told the crowd to take out their phones, turn their flashlights on, and sway their arms back and forth for the next song. Soon to follow, Dan + Shay came out as the music to the song “Speechless” began. Fans were louder than ever. Dan + Shay ended on two other popular songs. One was “19 You + Me,” the first song that put the duo on country radio and quickly climbed the charts. Finally, they finished with one of their all-time popular songs “Tequila.” For three minutes the whole room was in sync and nothing else seemed to matter.
The Armory was lit up with happy fans, dancing kids, and emotional supporters. Everyone went home that night feeling a little bit higher as Dan + Shay lifted the spirits in Minneapolis. They seemed to tease a potential visit this summer, and after that performance, I think they can expect an even bigger crowd next time.