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Garth Brooks planning 11 a.m. Thursday press conference

by Brandy McDonnell Modified: July 7, 2014 at 2:05 pm •  Published: July 7, 2014
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Garth Brooks is planning a Thursday press conference in which he will presumably make a big announcement. Photo by Nate Billings, The Oklahoman Archive
Garth Brooks is planning a Thursday press conference in which he will presumably make a big announcement. Photo by Nate Billings, The Oklahoman Archive

Oklahoma country music megastar will appear at a press conference at 11 a.m. Oklahoma time Thursday that will stream at garthbrooks.com, where he will presumably make a big announcement.

As previously reported, Brooks’ site promised Thursday “The wait is over … 7/7,” the cryptic message fading in against the usual circle-g logo with the thunder-and-lightning background.

I got pretty excited this morning when I got the email that said to watch But apparently, the wait is NOT over … until Thursday.

You gotta admit, Garth is getting pretty good at this man of mystery thing … maybe a little too good.

I got pretty excited when I got the email that said “Watch A LIVE STREAM of Garth Brooks’ Press Conference!” But when I went to his site, it turned out the wait wasn’t over for another three days.

Still, could this mean that we will FINALLY get official word of a new comeback album from the Yukon-bred superstar?  I’m certainly hoping that it works out that way.

“New music feels like it’s on the horizon, so it’s starting to bubble and it’s getting fun,” Brooks said backstage a year ago at Toby Keith’s OK Twister Relief Concert at the University of Oklahoma’s Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium. (Can you believe it’s been a year since that concert? Time flies.)

Actually, the smart money is that we’ll get a full list of comeback tour dates, which would be great, too.

After keeping us waiting extra days, it’d better be both, in my opinion.

To recap:

In December, the then-semi-retired singer announced on “Good Morning America” that he was planning a worldwide comeback tour in 2014.

If you’ll recall, that announcement was heralded by another mysterious message Oct. 18 on garthbrooks.com:

The sevens have aligned. It has begun…

Thank you for believing…love, g

Of course, it’s possible that complications that have arisen in Ireland regarding the Tulsa native’s comeback tour could have delayed this morning’s big planned announcement to Thursday.

According to The Boot, the promoter of Brooks‘ upcoming comeback shows in Ireland says all five performances are at risk after a local council denied the permits for two of the shows.

The longtime Owasso resident was scheduled to perform five sold-out shows July 25-29 at Croke Park in Dublin to kick off his worldwide comeback tour. The shows have been sold out for months, but after protests from local residents, the Dublin City Council refused to license the last two nights.

The council announced their decision Thursday, granting outdoor event licenses for the July 25, 26 and 27 shows but denying the licenses for the July 28 and 29 concerts. According to The Boot, the council cited their concerns about fears of noise, traffic disruption, illegal parking and “potential anti-social behaviour,” saying their reasoning was “to minimise disruption to the neighbourhood in which the concerts are to take place.”

The decision marks a victory for the Croke Park Residents Association, which had opposed the shows, citing an agreement with Croke Park in which no more than three concerts could take place at the venue in a year. Just two weeks ago, it seemed the shows would move forward despite the protests, but concert promoter Peter Aiken says the move puts all of the shows in danger

“It’s up in the air, that’s the honest to God answer,” said Aiken, according to The Boot, sharing a quote from the Irish Times last week. “I can’t turn around and say the three shows are going to happen.”

According to The Boot, Aiken explained last week that the scale of the show is such that it was planned for five nights to have time to “get it right.” He said he and members of his staff have been in daily contact with members of the city council, and there had been no prior indication that there would be problems with any of the permits.

As for speculation that the two additional shows could still take place at another location, according to The Boot, Aiken said last week that’s impractical.

“It’s a one-off show …we can’t strip that down and move to another venue,” he said.

The “Garth Brooks Comeback Special Event” was to take place in Dublin in anticipation of Brooks’ world tour that’s slated to get underway later this year.

“In ’97, (when) we were lucky enough to play Croke Park, the stadium was under construction,” Brooks said in a January statement. “130,000-plus of some of the greatest fans in the world. I was quoted then as saying, When this stadium is finished, I would love to come back and try to fill it again — this time to the brink — and we’re back to do just that.”

Certified by the Recording Industry Association of America in 2000 as the No. 1-selling solo artist in U.S. history, Brooks has sold in excess of 128 million albums and has received every accolade the recording industry can bestow on an artist. Brooks retired from touring in 2001, saying he wanted to devote himself to his three daughters until each was ready to go to college. The youngest, Allie, graduated high school in May.

Along with performing at events like President Obama’s inauguration and charity concerts like OK Twister Relief, the Oklahoma State University graduate accepted an offer from hotel magnate Steve Wynn to appear periodically at his Wynn Encore Theatre in Las Vegas for a four-year solo residency because he was able to schedule those performances around his daughters’ school activities.

With his break from music winding down, Brooks released last holiday season an eight-disc box set, “Blame It All on My Roots,” inspired by the Las Vegas performances in which he shared with audiences the music that influenced him growing up.

Four discs in the set, which reached No. 1 on the Billboard 200 albums chart, are new studio recordings of many of his favorite songs by other artists. Between Nov. 28 and early January, it sold more than 800,000 copies, according to Nielsen SoundScan, an indication of the continued interest in Brooks’ music.

So, I’ll be watching at 11 a.m. Thursday and will report back as the mystery finally becomes clearer.

-BAM

by Brandy McDonnell
Entertainment Reporter
Brandy McDonnell, also known by her initials BAM, writes stories and reviews on movies, music, the arts and other aspects of entertainment. She is NewsOK’s top blogger: Her 4-year-old entertainment news blog, BAM’s Blog, has notched more than 1...
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