This year has included some of the biggest highlights of Jason Aldean's career – at least from a touring standpoint. He has sold out shows at historic sports stadiums as Fenway Park and Wrigley Field. Tomorrow, fans can get a first-hand look at one of those big days from the "Night Train" tour, as the singer releases Night Train To Georgia – filmed in April in front of 66,000 fans at Sanford Stadium. The home of Aldean's beloved Georgia Bulldogs, the show marked the first time that a concert was held at the stadium. The CMA Entertainer of the Year nominee says that he was very impressed with how the Shaun Silva- produced DVD turned out.
"Growing up in Georgia, that stadium and that school is like a religion for us down there,"Aldean said before a premiere of the disc in Nashville last Tuesday. "There wasn't a place that could have meant more to me than playing there that night. Being able to play a show like that in my home state on that scale, and being able to have my family and friends come out. It wasn't like they were coming to see us play in a little club. We're playing Sanford Stadium. That was one of those once in a lifetime sort of things."
Though the date was one of his biggest yet, Aldean says he and his band made a conscious effort not to overthink things like the song selection, preferring to keep things as they have been all year. "Our set list that night was basically our set list for the tour. It was pretty close to what we're doing now at the end of the year. Once we dial in a set list that works, we don't typically change it much. We may add one here or there, take one out or put one in, but for the most part, we have these little segue-ways that go into one song from the other. Once you get that down, we don't mess with it too much. We had the set list made up before the show."
Is there any pressure on Aldean to up the ante in 2014? He says surprisingly not. "Doing Fenway, Wrigley, and Sanford, to me, was a way to measure and see if this was something we were ready for. To play or sell out a stadium is one thing, but to do that on a consistent basis 20 to 30 times a year is a different story. This showed us that we can go out and do that stuff. We're planning to do more of that. I try not to put any more pressure on myself as far as that goes. I think you do things the way you do them in your career, and whatever path that takes you down is the path it takes you down. I don't worry about making 2014 bigger than what we did in 2013. You keep doing things the right way, and those things just happen."
The singer has seven dates left on the 2013 leg of the "Night Train" tour, and will soon be releasing the fifth single from the "Night Train" album, "When She Says Baby." He is also excited about this past Friday's release of "Sweetwater," his big-screen film debut alongside Ed Harris and January Jones. He says acting was a learning experience.
"Obviously, with it being my first movie, I went in there with an open mind as far as trying to learn as much as I could from the people who actually do it for a living. Just to be able to be on the set with people like Ed Harris and Jason Isaacs, and watch how they worked, I learned more from that than I could have doing anything else. It's definitely something I want to do more of," he said.