Of course, if you’re part of Eric’s “Church Choir,” you don’t need to be convinced why Eric Church is one of the good guys in country music. But many traditional country fans, independent country fans, and Americana listeners have been conditioned to be speculative of anything from the mainstream over the years, including Eric Church, who let’s face it, has always been more rock than country, and can rub some folks the wrong way at times with the whole “Chief” attitude and aviators.
But similar to Dierks Bentley and a few others, Eric Church has proven throughout his career to be one of the ones you don’t feel bad rooting for, at least when it comes to using his position to prop up others who deserve a boost. Take his music or leave it, he’s always been one to champion the little guys, the legends, and the up-and-comers when it comes to booking his tour openers, and collaborating on his albums.
Eric Church is a fan of country music’s “Outsiders” if you will. That is why for his “Outsiders Revival” tour, Church will be reviving the practice of featuring some of the cooler folks in country music as opposed to whatever boilerplate star the industry is trying to shove down the public’s throats at the moment.
Cody Jinks, Whiskey Myers, Ashley McBryde, Koe Wetzel, Lainey Wilson, Midland, Parker McCollum, Travis Tritt, Elle King, Paul Cauthen, Jackson Dean, Morgan Wade, Muscadine Bloodline, Shane Smith & The Saints, Hailey Whitters, Jelly Roll, Ray Wylie Hubbard, and even The Red Clay Strays have all been tapped as openers for Eric Church’s 2023 tour dates.
In fact, what was strange was how on Church’s last few tours, he decided to go with no openers at all. Another shakeup in Eric’s 2023 tour is he’ll be playing amphitheaters instead of arenas, taking the show outside to soak up the summer weather. “We have never done an outdoor summer tour. Never headlined amphitheaters. Never brought a summer experience to your town that featured artists we want to share the summer with,” Eric Church says.
Sure, Whiskey Myers and Cody Jinks don’t exactly need a hand up from anybody these days. But with their more aggressive sounds, cross pollinating with Eric Church fans is an excellent opportunity for these artists. Ashley McBryde and Ray Wylie Hubbard are two artists who will personally attest to how important Eric Church has been to their careers—Ashley in having a major hand in launching it, and Ray in opening his music up to a new generation.
For artists like Shane Smith & The Saints and The Red Clay Strays, this will be the biggest stages they have ever played. Whether you catch one of these dates or not, it’s cool to see the spotlight on some worthy folks.
Eric Church 2023 “Outsiders Revival” Tour Dates
* denotes festival date
April 14* – Fort Lauderdale, Fla. / Fort Lauderdale Beach Park – Tortuga Music Festival
June 16* – Central Point, Ore. / Jackson County Expo – Rogue Music Festival
June 17* – Santa Rosa, Calif. / Sonoma County Fairgrounds – Country Summer Music Festival
June 22 – Milwaukee, Wisc. / American Family Insurance Amphitheater (Elle King)
June 23 – Detroit, Mich. / Pine Knob Music Theatre – (Ashley McBryde, The Red Clay Strays)
June 24 – Cleveland, Ohio / Blossom Music Center – (Ashley McBryde, The Red Clay Strays)
June 30 – Charleston, S.C. / Credit One Stadium (Parker McCollum, Morgan Wade)
July 1 – Virginia Beach, Va. / Veterans United Home Loans Amphitheater (Parker McCollum, Morgan Wade)
July 7 – Toronto, Ontario / Budweiser Stage (Koe Wetzel, Shane Smith & The Saints)
July 8 – Pittsburgh, Pa. / The Pavilion at Star Lake (Koe Wetzel, Shane Smith & The Saints)
July 14 – Cincinnati, Ohio / Riverbend Music Center (Travis Tritt, Muscadine Bloodline)
July 15 – St. Louis, Mo. / Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre (Travis Tritt, Muscadine Bloodline)
July 23* – Minot, N.D. / North Dakota State Fairgrounds – North Dakota State Fair
July 28 – Dallas, Texas / Dos Equis Pavilion (Midland, Ray Wylie Hubbard)
July 29 – Austin, Texas / Germania Insurance Amphitheater (Midland, Ray Wylie Hubbard)
Aug. 4 – Raleigh, N.C. / Coastal Credit Union Music Park (Cody Jinks)
Aug. 5 – Bristow, Va. / Jiffy Lube Live (Cody Jinks)
Aug. 11 – Indianapolis, Ind. / Ruoff Music Center (Cody Jinks)
Aug. 12 – Chicago, Ill. / Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre (Cody Jinks)
Aug. 13* – Des Moines, Iowa / Iowa State Fairgrounds – Iowa State Fair
Aug. 18 – Orange Beach, Ala. / The Wharf Amphitheater (Lainey Wilson, Jackson Dean)
Aug. 19 – Orange Beach, Ala. / The Wharf Amphitheater (Lainey Wilson, Jackson Dean)
Aug. 25 – Holmdel, N.J. / PNC Bank Arts Center (Whiskey Myers)
Aug. 26 – Philadelphia, Pa. / Freedom Mortgage Pavilion (Whiskey Myers)
Sept. 8 – Portland, Ore. / RV Inn Style Resorts Amphitheater (Jelly Roll, Hailey Whitters)
Sept. 9 – George, Wash. / Gorge Amphitheatre (Jelly Roll, Hailey Whitters)
Sept. 15 – Albuquerque, N.M. / Isleta Amphitheater (Paul Cauthen, Hailey Whitters)
Sept. 16 – Phoenix, Ariz. / Ak-Chin Pavilion (Jelly Roll, Paul Cauthen)
Sept. 22 – Atlanta, Ga. / Ameris Bank Amphitheatre (Whiskey Myers)
Sept. 23 – Charlotte, N.C. / PNC Music Pavilion (Whiskey Myers)
Sept. 29 – West Palm Beach, Fla. / iTHINK Financial Amphitheatre (Whiskey Myers)
Sept. 30 – Tampa, Fla. / MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre (Whiskey Myers)
Oct. 7* – Bristol, Tenn. / Bristol Motor Speedway – Country Thunder Bristol