Casey James Live at the Verizon Arena in North Little Rock

This was Casey’s first official post-signing concert, opening for Sugarland on their Incredible Machine Tour at the Verizon Arena in North Little Rock, Arkansas.  In his twenty-minute set, Casey played one cover and introduced five news songs.

The concert was well-attended by Casey fans and there is quite a bit of video from the show.  First up is from Polina: 

 Worth waiting for — New videos from CoolCJFan, very high quality!

These are from JabbasSweetie:

Part 1:

Part 2:

CJFan_Amber took the following five videos last night. We hope to have more videos ready to share shortly:



@kathyt11  (Kathy Terry) took some wonderful pictures during the concert which she put together in this photo album: Picaboo. She also shared some videos from Little Rock:

Another concert-goer posted this small segment of Casey’s second song: 

Casey took the stage tonight at exactly 7:30 pm Central time and started out by laying down some old-time blues with his own rousing, wailing version of Long Tall Texan.  Casey’s voice was strong and soulful and the band was jamming like they’d been together for years.  There was no sign of nervousness, befitting someone who’s been doing this for a very long time — if not on such a public stage as this.  For an opener, he had a great crowd reaction and they sure enjoyed him throwing the name “Little Rock” into the song!  The next song was Bulletproof, a bluesy, honky-tonk song that was a throwback to an earlier era when music wasn’t overproduced and masked by technology but raw and real.  After the first two cool, bluesy numbers, Casey slowed things down with a slower, country-tinged romantic ballad called Let’s Don’t Call it a Night which was highlighted by a  sweet, but short, aching guitar solo.  The sound mix was a bit off, with the background vocals a bit too loud and the thumping guitar a little intrusive, but when Casey’s voice was allowed to shine through, it soared. 

The next song, Til My Guitar Get Tired of Playing the Blues, sounded like a love song to his guitar.  He got it to wail and cry and sing.  It was beautiful.  His voice, and the lyrics, felt deeply personal, tinged with sad longing. 

Like Casey’s set during the American Idol Live Tour, there were many guitar changes.  For the next song he switched from the electric blue to white and amped up his performance even more, moving from bluesy Casey to country Casey to Casey the rocker.  Sometimes he would tease and gently stroke his guitar, coaxing every sweet note out of it.  Then another guitar switch and Casey just pounded away, as his brother would say, beating on it like it owed him money.  

After the tender Til My Guitar, Casey ramped it up with the bluesy-rock number I Just Gotta Drive.  The song does what it promises, carrying a driving beat that is propulsive and urgent.  Casey ended his set with the song Done Made up My Mind and it was my favorite of the set (putting aside my concerns about grammar) with a great hook and cool, Southern rock feel.  By the end, the crowd saw the various aspects of Casey’s musicianship, all of his different influences and ways of expressing himself in his musical bag of tricks.  And from what I could hear, they loved it!

CoolCJFan tweeted these photos of Casey playing his set:

@erinkmaxwell tweeted this picture during the set:

Janita394 (Jan Humphrey) shared these photos taken by her very secure husband from a very good vantage point:

Melanie Aureli Santana shared these photos she took of Casey on stage:

These were submitted by ncountrygrl

Kathy Terry took some pictures which she has up on her blog as well as her recap of the concert.  Check that out here.  Here’s a sample:

As indicated above, Kathy put together hundreds of photos in a picture book which you can check out, and order, here.

Casey tweeted shortly after his set ended tonight.  Wouldn’t it be great if  he would always tweet his location like this?  We could put a GPS tracker somewhere on him, if that would make it easier.

  North Country Girl wrote on the Castrocopia Discussion Forum:


First song very bluesy WooOO.
Second song now, more rockabilly–I hear a driving piano.
Third song piano intro sounds softer, love song (panty dropper?) ;). Really loving this song from what I can hear.
Fourth song–another slow one “to me there’s just no way to get over you.” Guitar sounds Allman Brothers; no, maybe Clapton.
Fifth song – scorching electric (slide?) intro.

There was a review of Casey’s set in ArkansasOnline, though they seemed to get at least one fact wrong:  Casey James, a former contestant on American Idol, opened the show with several bluesy numbers and a rollicking finale with “Jealous Guy.”  The rollicking part was correct, but it looks like they used a standin title until they learned the correct one — then forgot to make the switch.

The first detailed fan review comes from KacinaDoll on the Idol Forums:

More of the crowd was aware of him than I would have thought and most were already in their seats and attentive when he started. His sound is definitely more southern rock than country, but he opened with a cover of Long Tall Texan. He did it very cute and swingy in the middle and folks seemed to really like it. Next was something with Feel Like I’m Gonna Groove(?) which was very honky tonk rock and bluesy. Then two slower songs, Let’s Don’t Call it a Night and Time to Play the Blues. I think he lost the crowd a little bit on these. They aren’t bad, just not as much fun as the first two, then Drive which I see everyone’s already talking about, which picked the crowd back up a bit and closed with Done Made Up My Mind (?, maybe called My Mind from how Casey introduced it — I couldn’t tell). Drive was good, and I could see it maybe being a single, but I like the last one much better. Very strong close.

Except for Long Tall Texan, I didn’t recognize any of the other songs so I don’t know if they are covers or originals. Let’s Don’t Call It A Night sounded very much like an Alabama song, so I wondered if that was cowritten with the Alabama guy (Randy something?) and Drive definitely sounds like something Casey would have written.

I don’t know anything about country radio except that most hit songs in any genre have a really strong hook. For that reason, and because it’s my personal favorite anyway, I hope the last song My Mind(?) is his single. Unless of course that was a cover. flowers.gif

Sorry, no vids — my son used up the battery in my camera and neglected to mention that to me, so I spent most of the set thinking I couldn’t find the on button in the dark.

Casey’s set was definitely less polished than the other two acts, but that’s to be expected and I don’t think anyone held it against him. The local DJ who introduced him was very high on him and mentioned repeatedly that we would be hearing much more from Casey in the future.

IMO, and this is just me, Casey should have saved Long Tall Texan for later in the set. The crowd would have stayed hooked after that, but the slower numbers weren’t what people were in the mood to hear just then. For example, Little Big Town had them on their feet for Little White Church, but they sat back down for You’re the Reason and pretty much stayed down ’til Boondocks. Still, people seemed pretty happy with what they heard from Casey.

It was a good set, but it wasn’t a home run. It probably wouldn’t have mattered much if it had been. Sugarland kicks concert @ss. If you’re not twang-sensitive and you get the chance to see them, go. I now know why they sell out so fast. They flat put on a show and Jennifer Nettles reminded me, in the best possible way, of Mick Jagger.

Casey signed after the show near the main exit. There were maybe 40 or so hard core Casey fans standing in line waiting, but when the show ended and the crowd started pouring out, a 100 or so more started pushing in and trying to cut line and take pictures. Casey’s security guys got it under control (it was never scary-out-of-control, just annoying) and eventually even made the pretty young things who were trying to cut line go to the back. This disappointed Casey somewhat. It disappointed the pretty young things more and they didn’t stick around. Their loss. Casey’s very nice, taller even than I thought, and skinnier by far. He’s just as pretty, and the rumors are true: he smells great. Odd thing to notice, but true nonetheless. He’s also pretty proactive with fans, asking their names and making sure to shake their hands. The security guys made sure everyone knew they only got one picture, but they and Casey made sure they were good pictures. If yours was blurry or what have you, you took another, no problem.

One more thing — both Sugarland and Little Big Town have a lot of fun, cutesy stuff in their repetoires. Casey’s music is not cute, silly or gimmicky. It makes him a less than perfect fit with the other two, but he certainly warmed the crowd up even so. Though the crowd did stay in their seats for his entire set, and most of LBT’s. Stood all the way through Sugarland, make what you will of that. flowers.gif

I’m glad I went. Casey is entertaining without being schmaltzy, lounge actish, or desperate seeming. And his songs are much, much better than anything poor Lee had to record. It would be nice if his band would have pretended to enjoy the down tempo numbers as much as the others, but otherwise they were good. And it would have been nice if they’d had more of a set, production stuff, but I’m guessing that’s typical for openers and even Jennifer ran out of spray paint at a crucial point in Sugarland’s set, so props must be expensive, no? wink.gif Go if you get a chance. It’s money well spent.


About Shari

Creator and Administrator of The Casey James Blog.
This entry was posted in Casey James, Live Performances, Music, News, Photos, photos, Sugarland, Tour, Videos and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

31 Responses to Casey James Live at the Verizon Arena in North Little Rock

  1. medolark says:

    Tried to watch it but not too great. Just enough to tease me. I can’t wait 4 YT vids to surface. Ü

  2. janice teal says:

    so happy for you casey your life will be forever changed now and what a life it’s going to be!! god bless you

  3. CASEY fan says:

    Casey looks fantastic as always. Wish I could hear him.
    Thanks Shari.

  4. Deana says:

    Casey, once again you’ve shown the world what happens when a kid never gives up on their dreams. You killed it, as always, and it was easy to see, even via a choppy livestream, that the crowd loved you. You’re about to blow up in a big way, and we your fans are so proud and happy to be there to see it. God bless you, and much love to you and your family.

  5. charme says:

    …I have to admit that I all I have been able to think about for days now is hearing your voice and your new songs tonight! I am about to jump out of my skin Casey! I am over the top excited for you! What an inspiration you have been to me….and tonight you are about to begin the next chapter you have dreamed of your entire life! Congratulations to my hero! xoxo forever!

  6. Claudia says:

    The stream was weak and sketchy, but there is no doubt Casey was hot, hot, hot!

  7. Aimz says:

    I am so excited from those clips. He sounds totally in his element — bluesy and souful. He didn’t lie — it really sounds like Casey. Can’t wait for his album.

  8. Aimz says:

    I appreciate you posting the recap from Kacinadoll. So glad to hear he’s more southern rock, and not at all “silly, cute or gimmicky.”

  9. Cynthia says:

    From what I heard on the downloaded video, Casey fulfilled all my expectations of his superb talent.
    Keep in mind that opening up for a major act like Sugarland in itself is a big step in the right direction for starting his career, and of course people are going to make comparisons of Casey to the polished acts. Sugarland had to start somewhere for exposure , as well. I think Casey James exceeded my expectations!!
    Wait until we hear the polished CD. Can’t wait!! We love him.
    From your fans from Atlantic Canada , Casey .
    God Bless you!!

  10. Cynthia says:

    When they hear a song for the first time, it’s natural for the crowd to be quiet until they get the feel of it. And the more you hear a song, it starts to grow on you. Casey will reach his peak, in due time. Remember how humble he is and he knows his place. He was the opening act and not the main act.

  11. Cynthia says:

    His song ” I’d just like to drive” is ready for the AIR WAVES right now!!! polished or not. I prefer it live though. I ‘m so excited, my heart is just pumping and I feel alive!!

  12. Kelsey says:

    great review of the show! and thanks for the pictures. can’t wait to see more vids! 🙂

  13. Jeanette says:

    I am enjoying the pics and vids. I like “Drive”. I think anyone who likes to drive will relate to it. Some of you may not be old enough to remember Elvis. I saw him six time in Houston. One of the comments made about him was that he smelled good. Hmmmm. Oh, by the way, I was very very young when I saw him. HAHA

  14. kathyt1 says:

    It was beyond amazing to be there in person. Casey James new songs were all special in different ways as indicated in this article. Loved it when he rocked out… Loved the country side – the blues side – every minute of it. His honesty and charisma were shining as always. Can’t wait to buy the CD and the single. THANK YOU Casey for every minute of it….

  15. Tina D. says:

    Thanks so much Shari! The info, pics and the music teasers of Casey performing are keeping me hanging on the edge of my seat until quality videos show up on youtube. (we can only hope and pray:)
    Huge thanks to Terri for her big-hearted intention to stream to us last evening. It was very kind and generous to try!
    So incredibly happy for you Casey and SO proud to be a fan!

  16. lisa says:

    please post on btm when vids are on utube,i want so much to hear his new music.
    i really want to hear lyrics more than background.i love his voice.

  17. I am loving it! All of the new pictures and video. What an amazing guy, I am so anxious for the rest of the world to see. Thanks Shari and Marie for the great job you do. And of course thank you Casey, for the great job that you do! Love it, just love it.

  18. Thanks Marie for getting all the videos on there!!!!

    • MNCyn says:

      I feel like I’ve been at a concert listening to all the songs! Thanks Marie and Shari for all your hard work to bring this music to the fans!!!

  19. CJSassySyl says:

    I just can’t get enough. The new music was a perfect fit for “Casey”. No one else can “Drive ” it on Home like Casey can. MORE, MORE,MORE !!! Sense I could not be there. Thanks So Much, Shari

  20. Drew J says:

    All day I’m itching to go and rush home, I’ve been thinking about the uploads from Lil Rock all day. Needless to say I’m glad this blog existed. I freakin loooove Long Tall Texan.

    Thank you endlessly to those who captured the photos and videos. I know it’s difficult to do other things while you’re being sucked in Casey’s world.

  21. Drew J says:

    Who am I kidding? I love all his set. I’ve been listening to “Drive” all day on my iPod… considering its scratchy quality.

    Whoever said Casey exceeded her expectations, ur spot on. I feel the same way.

  22. Carolyn says:

    That guitiar riff on “Drive” is catchy, incredibly catchy. I can’t get it out of my mind. And then Casey’s vocals come on and it’s such a great driving song. I can hear it on the radio right now. But I have to say I prefer “Done Made Up My Mind” – it rocks but it does have a country edge with the lyrics so I’m that’s the first single.

    But my fav? Let’s Don’t Call It A Night”. Just plain beautiful.

  23. bluemiss says:

    Long Tall Texan lyrics –
    Well I’m a long tall Texan
    I wear a ten-gallon hat
    (He rides from Texas wearing a ten-gallon hat)
    Yes I’m a long tall Texan
    I wear a ten-gallon hat
    (He rides from Texas wearing a ten-gallon hat)
    Well people look at me and they say
    Is that your hat
    (He rides from Texas wearing a ten-gallon hat)

    Well I’m a long tall Texan
    I ride a big white horse
    (He rides from Texas on a big white horse)
    Yes I’m a long tall Texan
    I ride a big white horse
    (He rides from Texas on a big white horse)
    Well people look at me and they say
    Is that your horse
    (He rides from Texas on a big white horse)

    Well I was walking down the street
    With my shiny badge
    My spurs jingling there at my feet
    I seen a man a’coming
    Coming with a gun and
    I just can’t be beat

    Yes I’m a long tall Texan
    I enforce justice for the law
    (He rides from Texas to enforce the law)
    Well I’m a long tall Texan
    I enforce justice for the law
    (He rides from Texas to enforce the law)
    Well people look at me and they say
    Is you the law
    (He rides from Texas to enforce the law)

    Well I’m a long tall Texan
    Yes I’m a long tall Texan

  24. Pingback: Excellent Footage Of Casey James Opening For Sugarland On March 4th in North Little Rock | Today's Country Music Videos

  25. Katy says:

    Am very grateful for the higher quality videos. Casey performs beautifully! Love every song except Long tall Texan which is cheezy, and the line Lets not call it a night, nnh nnh. Casey is better than this. May I just say also, how incredibly stupid the women up front sound in these videos. Idiots!!!!!!! What do they think they are accomplishing? Why not just applause with some dignity? Idiots!!!!

    • Katy says:

      Must admit, though Long Tall Texan is cheezy, Casey makes it work somehow, and now I am listening to it again and again. hmmmmmm

  26. Pingback: Excellent Footage Of Casey James Opening For Sugarland On March 4th in North Little Rock | The Country Site

  27. Pingback: Excellent Footage Of Casey James Opening For Sugarland On March 4th in North Little Rock | The Country Site Featuring Casey James

  28. Pingback: Fans Cannot Get Enough of Casey James | The Casey James Blog

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