What It Was Like: Lucero Opens Up The DOMAXXII Showcase

Ben Nichols and Lucero handled the Saturday heat just fine, thanks.
Ben Nichols and Lucero handled the Saturday heat just fine, thanks.
Patrick Michels

Lucero
Outdoor Stage
4:30 p.m.

No band could have opened the DOMAXXII outdoor stage showcase better than Memphis' alt-country act, Lucero.It was hot as blazes, and the first thing out of lead singer Ben Nichols' mouth was that playing this show was "like playing a show on a frying pan.
"

Yeah, it was.

Despite the lack of shade, there were still plenty of people in the audience to laugh along at Nichols' heat-centered banner, which would continue for the remainder of the afternoon. 


Nichol's voice indeed proved to be the centerpiece for this band. He sounded like he's smoked a thousand too many cigarettes, drank a thousand too many whiskeys, and been to about a thousand too many parties.

And that's exactly what the Lucero show turned into--a huge party.


The set started with a distorted guitar strum that Nichols said "sounds like angels singing." Its tone was full and almost as gritty as his voice when the band ran through the first three up-tempo numbers. Dancing in the audience ensued almost immediately, which proves that Lucero has a different breed of fans.

Die-hard doesn't seem to cut it. Who else would show up on the hottest day of the year and belt out the lyrics to every song on the setlist--which, turns out, doesn't exist.

"We never make a setlist," said the shirtless bass player, John Stubblefield, in a thick country drawl after the show.

The proof was at the concert's halfway mark when the band decided to finish the show by only playing requests, which turned into a bartering system between the audience and the band--a beer for a song. 


The first request was "Sweet Little Thing," from their album Tennessee, followed by another classic, "Tears Don't Matter Much." 

Just before they closed out the set with the ultimate party-ender, "Drink Til We're Gone," a guy in the audience shouted another request for "Sweet Little Thing."

Nichols replied, "We just played that two songs ago. Heat stroke has finally set in."


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