Currently the star of a Geico commercial, Country Music mega star Kenny Rogers gave a lot more than 15 minutes to a sold out Finish Line Theater audience Thursday night at Oaklawn Racing and Gaming in Hot Springs, Arkansas. The Gambler rolled through an hour and a half of his aces, some old and some new.
Rogers was introduced as the man with 24 number 1 songs and 12 number 1 albums. His membership in the Country Music Hall of Fame in Nashville was also noted.
The first two songs of his set list were ones he called two of his loudest. “Love Or Something Like It,” and “It’s A Beautiful Life” set the scene for the 50 year music veteran’s night in the Spa City.
Rogers bantered back and forth with a man named Richard near the front. He told him he would toss him a $10 bill for every song he recognized. At the end of the night, Richard was presented with a Kenny Rogers t-shirt.
The music man said he could tell the married couples from the unmarried couples by the way they acted when he sang his songs. For example, in St. Louis recently, he said a married woman tried putting her arm around her husband during “Through the Years” and the husband told her I didn’t like that song then and I sure don’t like it now. Rogers said the couples dating for about eight months would hold one another tight when he sang his songs.
Having had a knee replaced recently, Rogers said not to try to catch him if he fell because he has “Life Alert.” His audience appreciated the joke.
Rogers said his favorite song from the 80’s is “She Believes In Me” and his favorite duet is “We Got Tonight,” the Bob Seger song Rogers did with Sheena Easton.
His recent Dolly Parton duet, “You Can’t Make Old Friends,” went over well. It included the video playing while he sang. He said Dolly is an amazing person who has no filter. “If it’s on her mind, it’s out of her mouth.” Rogers told the story of the time Parton told him “I could never sing at your funeral.”
Rogers paid a load of respect to songwriter Don Schlitz. One of his songs, “The Greatest,” is about a little boy playing baseball. Rogers called the song a wonderful slice of Americana.
Rogers said he woke up one Thursday and discovered he was old, unlike the young, long black-haired, earring wearing member of Kenny Rogers & The First Edition.
Before texting and tweeting, Rogers said he would personally go to radio stations asking the people there to play his music.
A video of the 1968 song “Just Dropped In”( To See What My Condition Was In) was shown during the show.
A fan favorite seemed to be “Don’t Leave Me In The Night Time,” off his latest album. He said what better way to do a Zydeco song than to feature Buckwheat Zydeco from New Orleans.
Having been to Morocco, England, France and a long list of other places, Rogers said there is no greater feeling than stepping off a plane in America. He asked the veterans to stand and sang “America.”
The video for “The Gambler” was also shown as Rogers sang along to it.
The evening was capped off with his two biggest songs, “Lady” and “Islands In the Stream.” Rogers passed out tambourines for fans to shake during the song he made famous with Dolly Parton.
Kenny Rogers Set List For Finish Line Theater Show, September 25, 2014
LOVE OR SOMETHING LIKE IT
IT’S A BEAUTIFUL LIFE
IF YOU WANT TO FIND LOVE
(OLD MEDLEY) THROUGH THE YEARS/RUBY
COWARD OF THE COUNTY
BUY ME A ROSE