Willie Nelson & Family, Alison Krauss and Jerry Douglas Concert (June 19, 2015) (Nampa, ID)


by: Michael Deeds

Country icon Willie Nelson isn’t just on the road again – he’s crazy. At least for an 81-year-old.

Nelson and his legendary  Martin guitar, Trigger, partnered with Alison Krauss and Union Station last year on tour. The co-headlining acts will hit the highway again this spring, performing Friday, June 19, at the Ford Idaho Center Amphitheater in Nampa. Give the red-headed stranger credit: He has formidable ambition, not to mention stamina.

Tickets go on sale to the general public at 10 a.m. Feb. 27 for $45-$65 at ICTickets. If you’re in the cool kids’ club, presale tickets will be available a day earlier.

The Nelson and Friends/Krauss and Union Station concert – and yes, resonator guitar whiz Jerry Douglas will be there, too – is an enticing outdoor possibility. (Even if Krauss’ presence makes me pine for a long overdue Robert Plant visit to Idaho.)

It’s the latest news in an early preview of summer. The Idaho Botanical Garden’s Outlaw Field got a jump and put two shows on sale days ago: violinist Lindsey Stirling (May 26) and pop-rockers Barenaked Ladies/Violent Femmes/Colin Hay (July 24).

Outlaw Field and the Idaho Center are linked by the latest Nelson appearance. Soon after I posted news online, I received an email from a reader who had never been to the Idaho Center Amphitheater. He wondered whether he should go, or “Would I have the same experience that I had at Outlaw Field (i.e. got there early and got a good seat only to have others crowd in front standing, leaving me with NO view of the stage)?”

At first, I thought he was referring to the Shotgun Willie debacle in 2010, when 200 or so folks at Outlaw Field decided to stand directly in front of the stage, and fans sitting behind them went cuckoo with rage. Letters to the Editor ensued.

But the emailer actually was referring to Nelson’s return visit two years ago.

All I can say is this: Besides lawn tickets, there will be reserved seats available at the Idaho Center Amphitheater.

This will make all the difference, according to Idaho Center marketing director Dan Phippen: “We have over 3,000 seats, so you can purchase a seat and be assured you will not be crowded, and you will be able to see from your seat sitting down.”

Weed-tokin’ octogenarian Willie may be able to stand all night on stage, but the rest of us mortals deserve a seat, right?

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