Boots And Hearts Music Festival @ Burl’s Creek Event Ground – Thurs., Aug. 4th -Sun., Aug.7th, 2022
By BKONTHESCENE & Wayne Baggs
It has been 3 years since the last Boots & Hearts Music Festival. This year the festival was a homage to Canadian artists, also paying tribute to female artists on the final night. The festival may have broken the attendance record for a Sunday, with more than 50,000 country music fans packed into the concert venue. Here are the some of the highlights of the great weekend of fun, festivities and of course Country music.
Owen Riegling, from Mildmay, Ontario, took the title of 2022 Boots & Hearts Emerging Artist. His band came to Boots and Hearts really delivered on the live show. From the showcase “Front Porch” stage on Thursday night, Riegling took his live show over to the main stage where he had the crowd cheering, whistling and dancing.
Last minute replacement and multi-platinum entertainer Jake Owen cruised to another career milestone with “made-for-radio head-bopper” (Taste of Country) “Best Thing Since Backroads” landing in the #1 spot on the Country Aircheck/Mediabase chart. “Let’s go! Boys and girls, the #1 song in all the land of country music,” The country artist headlined the main stage on Friday night.
Saturday was another sweltering day at Boots and Hearts both on the stage and off. Performances by Aaron Goodvin, Steven Lee Olsen and Meghan Patrick highlighted the day and night.
Aaron Goodvin started off the entertainment on the main stage and it felt like we were on the sun watching his set as temperatures climbed up into the high 30s with the humidity but that didn’t keep the fans from coming in early to see the early afternoon talent on stage. Aaron only had 40 minutes to work.
Next on the main stage was Steven Lee Olsen playing his hits like his current hit “Nashville or nothing.” He also played a Kip Moore’s #1 hit “More girls like you.” His set ended and the generous artist threw out some merch to the crowd and then opening up a beverage can before departing the stage.
Meghan Patrick took the main stage next and she had the crowd dancing and singing along from the first song. Playing to a packed very sweaty crowd for about 15 minutes with all her hits and even toasted the crowd during her set. She’s come along way and we first covered her playing a set at the CNE. As she finished up her set she said how Boots and Hearts was her favorite festival in Canada and how lucky she was to be playing the main stage to so many people.
Russell Dickerson took to the stage after Meghan Patrick and he was singing and running all over the stage high fiving the fans while singing “Home Sweet” and continued the energy all set despite the high temperatures until he concluded with “Blue Tacoma”. He definitely got the crowd good and ready for Florida Georgia line.
Florida Georgia Line took to the stage and fans were ready to dance along to all the hits. This was one of the last shows that FGL will be doing together as they will both be on a solo career and solo tour. They had the pyrotechnics going off behind the drummer on a handful of songs and you could feel the heat out in the crowd. The encore “Cruise” had the whole crowd singing along and they did the handshake mid catwalk like they’ve always been known for. Ontario fans have always supported FGL since their humble beginnings, who were truly happy to be back at Boots and Hearts one last time.
Canadian singer and guitar player Lindsay Ell gave a spirited and great performance while using her “Axe” Fender guitar to the exuberant fans, and also hyping headliner, Shania Twain. She also got the crowd involved by tossing some white balls into the crowd.
The main stage on Sunday featured an all-female lineup from start to finish. With only two male solo artists playing on the Sunday, This was a great platform to see female inclusion in the country industry, being a conscious effort made in this area.
The concert was disrupted by a surprise flash storm. Thankfully passing away, afterwards Shania Twain sang all her hits in a 90-minute set that wowed an estimated 50,000 fans.
Not even torrential rain, high winds, and plenty of lightning could keep headliner Shania Twain away from the main stage. After about an hour of delay due to the weather, the sky cleared, fans returned, and the Canadian queen of country music wowed the drenched crowd.
Sunday night’s thunder and lightning didn’t stop the return of Boots and Hearts from being a booming success after a two-year absence due to the pandemic. Overall, a great time for fans of country music and we look forward to The Boots And Hearts Music Festival for 2023.
We would like to thank Karen Hopkins and the rest of the crew from Republic One for the invitation to this event.