When your tour is as big as the Brothers of the Sun Tour with Kenny Chesney and Tim McGraw, you have to be prepared to log a lot of hours. The 21-stadium tour — sponsored by GAC – kicks off June 2 in Tampa. By the time it wraps in Foxboro, MA on August 25, it will have traveled more than 19,458 miles over 88 touring days with 20 buses and more than 80 tractor trailers.
“It doesn’t seem that long ago when it was just 14 of us crammed into a 12-bunk bus we called ‘the iron lung,’ ‘cause it leaked diesel fumes inside the bus,” Kenny said. “There weren’t enough bunks for everybody so we took turns sleeping on the couch and floor, but we were living our dream and having fun. And even though we have a lot more stuff now, we’re still having a blast and just as passionate about playing music and taking it out to the fans, whether it be in a club or stadium.”
“It’s been a lot of fun rehearsing in Nashville, but rehearsals are over,” Tim McGraw said. “It’s time to pack the trucks and head to Tampa. I’m pretty sure there are towns in Louisiana with smaller populations than we have on our road crew. It takes a village and a lot of hard work by a lot of people, but I’m just excited for the fans because we’ve got one hell of a show planned for them!”
The tour crew is made up of 283 members. They will be fed by a traveling catering staff that will serve three hot meals a day, adding up to almost 3,2000 meals in just the five days surrounding the opening show in Tampa. Show day also includes the ‘Stage Bar Grill’ which will serve burgers and hot dogs onstage with everyone from the stage manager to members of Kenny’s band manning the grill. More than 50,000 bottles of water will be consumed during the tour, with the bottles being recycled.
With stadium shows on both Saturdays and Sundays, two teams are required to build and tear down the expansive staging. From start to finish, each team will spend 91 hours at each stadium. The set includes an LED video wall with nearly 2,400,000 pixels for sharpness and clarity.
“I use the word ‘passion’ a lot because it takes a lot of passionate and dedicated people to make this happen day in and day out,” Kenny said. “And most of the people that were with us a decade ago are still here. We’re a family.”