In 1982, a South Texas artist pulled up to Billy Bob’s in his truck, unloaded his gear from the attached trailer and loaded in for a gig at which he opened for Billy Joe Shaver. This artist’s name was George Strait, and that was the last time he'd played Panther City.
In November 2019, the King of Country returns to Fort Worth for the first time in 37 years at Dickies Arena, the 14,000-seat multipurpose venue anticipated to open in late 2019. In blatant recognition for just how special this event is, promoters even priced the low-tier tickets at $19.82 to reflect the year he last played. To make matters even better, western swing staples Asleep at the Wheel open.
Not much is known about Dickies Arena, spare the fact that the city of Fort Worth is putting in $225 million (per the Star-Telegram), and that the stadium will also be a host of the NCAA’s March Madness in 2022 (side note: remember that time Bruce Springsteen played a free show in 2014 for the March Madness Festival? Hopefully we can expect something similar.)
“This performance will be in one of George Strait’s most intimate arena settings, and we can’t wait to bring this to Fort Worth," said Matt Homan, the president and general manager of Dickies Arena, in a press release.
It says a lot about Strait’s status in the country music industry when a show with 14,000 attendees is considered “intimate,” but it’s not surprising. After all, King George has had 44 singles reach No. 1 on Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart, and he has sold more than 100 million records. He also broke the record for largest indoor concert in North America for a show at AT&T Stadium in Arlington in June 2014, which was his last DFW performance before his retirement later that year.
Tickets for his return next November go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday, Dec. 7 via Ticketmaster. Given that more than 104,000 people attended his Arlington gig four years ago, it would be ill-advised to sleep on this.