Sound Buffet: Country, Blues and the 80s take over Kentucky State Fair stages


LOUISVILLE — A little bit of country, a hint of blues and a flashback to the 1980s will be on full display at the 108th Kentucky State Fair starting Thursday, Aug. 16.

More than 600,000 people are expected to visit state fair during the 10-day event and will have the chance to listen to a variety of musical acts. Each night, except the closing night, the fair will host a free concert in Cardinal Stadium with paid admission.

But the headlining musical acts, which will be playing in Freedom Hall, will begin on Thursday with the son of a country legend.

Hank Williams, Jr. — a stalwart of country music in his own right — known for hits like “Country Boy Can Survive” and “Dixie on My Mind,” along with his most recognizable hit, which until recently was featured in a modified version as the opening song to NFL’s Monday Night Football “All My Rowdy Friends Are Coming Over Tonight” are among Williams’ fan favorites.

He will follow blues group George Thorogood and the Destroyers, who will be featuring songs from their latest album — which reached number one on the Billboard Top Blues Albums chart —”2120 South Michigan Ave.”

For fans of the 1980s, ballad rockers Journey — sans Steve Perry —will be rocking Freedom Hall Friday night. The group will be joined by Canadian rock band Loverboy — probably best known for their hit “Working for the Weekend”— and four-time Grammy Award-winner Pat Benatar.

Saturday will bring the country back to Freedom Hall as Rascal Flatts and its “The American Band Tour” lands at the Kentucky State Fair. The Columbus, Ohio-based trio will follow three country acts Little Big Town, Eli Young Band and Edens Edge.

Rascal Flatts is touring in support of their eighth studio album “Changed,” according to the Kentucky State Fair website.

The fair will close on Sunday with country-pop trio The Band Perry headlining the fair’s main stage. The Mississippi-based siblings — Kimberly, Reid and Neil Perry — have earned a lot of attention since releasing their debut self-titled album in 2010.

The group has been nominated for a Grammy as Best New Artist and has earned Top New Artist from the Academy of Country Music and Song of the Year from the Country Music Association awards, among others, according to a press release.

The Band Perry will be joined by special guest Needtobreathe, a South Carolina-based pop-rock trio.

About the Kentucky State Fair:

Ticket Info Hotline- 502-367-5001; State Fair Hotline- 502-367-5002; or for more information visit the state fair website at

The Kentucky State Fair Free Concert Series is sponsored by RAM Trucks:

Thursday, Aug. 16 – Cinderella with Sebastian Bach

Friday, Aug. 17 – Keith Sweat with Robbie Bartlett

Saturday, Aug. 18 – Hot Chelle Rae with Neon Hitch

Sunday, Aug. 19 – Oak Ridge Boys with Jimmy Fortune

Monday, Aug. 20 – Newsboys with special guest Sanctus Real

Tuesday, Aug. 21 – Ronnie Milsap with special guest BJ Thomas

Wednesday, Aug. 22 – Jake Owen with Florida Georgia Line

Thursday, Aug. 23 – Happy Together Tour with Turtles, Grass Roots, Gary Puckett, Buckinghams and Micky Dolenz

Friday, Aug. 24 – Young the Giant with special guest We Barbarians

Saturday, Aug. 25 – Justin Moore with Colt Ford

The concerts are free with paid admission to the Kentucky State Fair. All shows begin at 8 p.m. in Cardinal Stadium at the Kentucky Exposition Center. Gates open at approximately 6:30 p.m.

Headlining acts:

Thursday, Aug. 16- Hank Williams, Jr. with special guest George Thorogood and the Destroyers. The show will begin at 8 p.m. and ticket prices range from $39-$49.

Friday, Aug. 17- Journey with special guests Loverboy and Pat Benatar. The show will begin at 8 p.m. and ticket prices range $42-52.

Saturday, Aug. 18- Rascal Flatts with special guests Little Big Town, Eli Young Band and Edens Edge. The show will begin at 7:30 p.m. and ticket prices range from $49-$60.

Sunday, Aug. 26- The Band Perry with special guest Needtobreathe. The show will begin at 7:30 p.m. and ticket prices range from $35-$45.

All concerts will be held at Freedom Hall.

For more information on Kentucky State Fair entertainment and events, visit Customers can also charge by phone at 1-800-745-3000 or purchase online at Ticketmaster.


About hoosierhits
The music blog of the News and Tribune, Jeffersonville & New Albany, Ind.

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