The much anticipated Joe Nichols Birthday Bash weekend was about to get underway. There were new Joe Nichols fans to meet and old friends to reminisce with. Marilyn and I had just spent months of preparation getting birthday signs, party plans and birthday gifts organized with fellow Joe Nichols fan club members. This was the night when all of our hard work and planning was going to materialize.
Several members of Joe's fan club that chose to participate in a special group gift received meet and greet passes that evening. A long standing fan club member, Rhonda agreed to present him with one of his group gifts, a custom made 14 kt white gold bracelet in the shape of the III logo from his album. This was to honor Joe turning 30 and III going gold all in the same year. In addition, Rhonda presented Joe with two "Joe Nichols' 30th Birthday Bash" 11/24/06 tee shirts one for him and the other for his 8 year old daughter Ashelyn. Each had their names on the back. Joe did a great imitation of Ashelyn's reaction to receiving the tee shirt, rolling his eyes & tossing his head back. Another long standing fan club member, Fran presented Joe with a special 30th birthday cake from his fans. Joe appreciated all his gifts and made a point to wave good bye to the fan club gift presenters.
As we headed to our seats in the front row there were several other Joe fans next to us. We asked for their assistance in holding up individual red glitter letters that spelled out Happy Birthday Joe. They were more than willing to participate. During the concert he thanked the fan club members for traveling a long way to come and see him. That acknowledgement was sincerely appreciated by all the fans!
When the opening sound track ended and Joe made his appearance singing "Brokenheartsville" he looked in our direction, saw our signs, smiled and waved in recognition. After his third song he asked the crowd to come forward and party with him. Our little group made our way to the front of the stage and stayed there for the remainder of the evening. What an incredible evening it was. He announced that this show was going to be impromptu and fun. Believe me it was. Of course he sang his number one hits including "Brokenheartsville," "The Impossible," and "Tequila Makes Her Clothes Fall Off," as well as a fabulous mixture of Merle Haggard, Hank Williams Jr. hits and a tribute to Buck Owens.
Joe was in a particularly playful mood that night and asked for a fan's cell phone. He called a guy named Blake (no, not Blake Shelton). During this call he told him to come and get us out of jail. Joe stated that "we are not well, you gotta come quick, there are like 4,000 of us." The crowd was laughing and enjoying his sense of humor. At the end of the phone message, Joe told Blake to hurry because John was naked. Then he tossed the phone back to John. You have to be on your toes or Joe will definitely get the better of you with his quick wit. Although he is never malicious or cruel in anyway he can take an ordinary situation and put a hysterical twist on it.
It was a wonderful night full of incredible music and even after a two plus hour performance Joe left his fans begging for "Just A Little More."