Country singer Sara Evans brings acoustic concert to the DeJoria Center
What: Sara Evans
When: 8 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 14
Where: DeJoria Center, 970 N. S.R. 32 in Kamas
Country-music fans will get to hear and Sara Evans perform her hits “No Place That Far,” “Born to Fly,” and “A Little Bit Stronger” in a different light when the award-winning singer hits the stage on Nov. 14 at the DeJoria Center.
Evans will play the entire set, including some surprising covers, acoustically.
“These shows are fun, because they give the fans a chance to experience the songs from another perspective, and they also give the fans a chance to really hear me, and hear the lyrics,” she said. “The intimate setting is also an opportunity for me to talk with the fans a little more. Sometimes it becomes like a stand-up routine.”
The singer will be joined by two guitarists — her son Avery Barker and her longtime band member Ben Thompson — as well as her sister, vocalist Lesley Evans Lyons.
Evans enjoyed rearranging the songs for her tour, which heads to Utah after a string of East Coast dates.
“It was fun trying to work out the different parts, because we aren’t going to have those fiddle or slide-guitar solos,” she said.
Playing these new versions only added to Evans’ love of entertaining her fans.
“I try to be spot-on perfect every night in any live performance, because that’s my favorite aspect of what I do,” she said.
Evans’ career, which includes five No. 1 hits, an Academy of Country Music Top Female Vocalist award in 2006, and numerous American Music and Billboard Music awards, started when she was growing up on a farm near New Franklin, Missouri.
“Music was really something that I didn’t have a choice in,” she said. “My parents discovered I had talent when I was 4. So they put me on stage with my brothers, and hired other musicians to surround us.”
Evans loved performing from the get-go.
“That’s what I was going to do no matter what,” she said. “I had planned to go to college, but then decided not to do that and (instead) move to Nashville.”
From the time she stepped foot in Music City U.S.A. in 1991, Evans tried to perform for and meet as many people as she could.
“I felt if I met somebody in the industry and did something toward that goal every day, the right person would hear me sing and things would take off,” she said.
Things began taking shape with her critically acclaimed 1997 album “Three Chords and the Truth,” which set the stage for her 1998 follow-up, “No Place That Far.”
Spurred by the title single that hit No. 1 on Billboard’s U.S. Country Charts, “No Place that Far” became Evans’ first Gold album, selling more than 500,000 copies.
Throughout her career, Evans recorded four more No. 1 hits, “Suds In The Bucket, “A Real Fine Place To Start,” “Born to Fly” and “A Little Bit Stronger,” while releasing nine-full length albums.
Her most recent solo album, “Words,” was released in 2017, and Evans wanted that album to make a statement about the country-music genre.
“I was trying to drive home the point that the words that are on country radio these days are so stupid,” she said. “They don’t say anything, and actually disrespect the genre and the writers who are here and the writers who have come before us.”
This viewpoint, Evans said, is probably why she’s not regularly played on country radio.
“I just won’t sing BS ‘bro country’ party songs about tight jeans and the truck,” she said. “I walk that fine line of being commercial enough without selling out.”
That balance helps Evans keep her integrity, she said.
“We cannot forget about the lyrics,” she said. “If they are good and say something important, then you can do whatever you want musically.”
The singer knows something about doing what she wants musically, because she has collaborated with a stable of artists such as rock bands Maroon 5, Three Doors Down and REO Speedwagon, Latin Grammy-winning singer Marc Anthony and rock guitarist Joe Walsh.
“Some of the collaborations I have done have been my favorite performances of my career and of my life,” Evans said. “I love singing with other people. It’s easy for me to find that connection with them, especially in the moment when we’re live on stage, and every single time I go away absolutely thrilled and thinking I have done the best performance of my life.”
Keeping an open mind in the music industry is important to Evans.
“Music is music, so to me it doesn’t matter what genre it is,” she said. “It’s all about whether or not the music is great and the musicians are talented. And it’s a matter of nailing the song, making it great and finding a passion for it.”
In addition to her passion of music, Evans has a passion to do charity work, and was honored for her philanthropic work in 2018 by the National Association of Broadcasters Education Foundation’s Service To America Leadership Award. Evans, a Red Cross ambassador and recipient of the Crystal Cross award for her work with the disaster relief organization, raised more than $10,000 for CMA Foundation and music education from the sale of a wine; her ONEHope Sara Evans Signature Series 2014 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon.
“It was an honor,” Evans said about the Service to America Leadership Award. “I’ve been so lucky, so I feel like if there is anywhere I can help by using my celebrity status and inspire a fan to support a cause, that’s a blessing to do that.”
Evans is currently working on a new album that she plans to release early next year.
“We had an amazing week and we’re all completely pumped and stoked about the new music,” she said. “I think the fans will be shocked when they hear the new songs.”
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