You have a chance to hang out in Travis Tritt’s living room Friday night.
Tritt’s concert will still take place at the RiverCenter for the Performing Arts. But he’ll play an acoustic show, an approach he takes fewer than 30 times a year.
Local music fans will see just Tritt and his guitar on stage. The intimate setup exudes a unique vibe.
“It doesn’t feel like a concert venue at all. It feels like my living room,” the country music singer said in a recent phone interview.
Tritt, known for songs like “Help Me Hold On” and “Foolish Pride,” began to embrace the acoustic approach about two years ago.
“People have been asking me to do this for years,” he said of the setup.
Tritt’s biggest fear? He didn’t want to be boring. After all, “acoustic” isn’t exactly synonymous with “high-energy.”
Tritt’s perspective changed after he performed an acoustic show with country music singer Marty Stuart. Tritt was asked to stand in for singer Porter Wagoner, who was booked to perform but passed away prior to the concert.
The experience erased many of Tritt’s reservations about the acoustic approach. “That was the catalyst,” Tritt said.
Since then, he’s grown to appreciate the setup’s advantages.
“It gives me more of an opportunity to show what I can do. You don’t have anything to hide behind, instrumentally and vocally,” he said.
Looking back, Tritt notes many of his musical idols -- John Denver, James Taylor, Jimmy Buffett -- occasionally performed acoustic shows.
“I always loved it,” Tritt said. “I would go to their shows and just be enthralled.”
Still don’t know what to expect on Friday? Look forward to an experience that deviates from the structured form of a standard concert.
“It’s really free form. It’s very spontaneous,” Tritt explained. “There is more talking overall throughout the show.”
Fans’ responses to the approach often center on “I never knew,” Tritt said. “We’re still able to not only impress, but surprise some people,” Tritt said.
That doesn’t mean Tritt will take an acoustic-only approach to touring any time soon. He only has a limited number of acoustic shows and still performs with his band on other dates.
“We absolutely do not want to ever wear our welcome out with anything that we’re doing,” Tritt said.
Tritt, who hails from Marietta, released his debut disc in 1990. He’s been a member of the Grand Ole Opry since 1992.
Local singers Annelise Walley and Andy Luker won a local talent contest to become the opening acts at Friday’s concert.
OPENING ACT: ANDY LUKER
Bio: The Columbus singer started playing guitar when he was 14. He’s performed at local venues like Flip Flops, La Margarita and T.G.I. Friday’s.
Musical influence: Luker is a big fan of Zac Brown. The Zac Brown Band is known for hits like “Chicken Fried” and “Toes.”
Pre-show jitters: He’s secured a local fan base, but Luker still experiences some jitters before taking the stage. “As soon as I start playing, they usually go away,” he said.
Cool fact: Luker’s song list is diverse. He often plays a “rap remix” that includes his take on tunes like “Gin and Juice,” “Ignition” and “Baby Got Back.”
Learn more here.
OPENING ACT: ANNELISE WALLEY
Bio: The Auburn singer was home-schooled last year so she could travel to Nashville every week to work on her music. She still goes to Nashville on a monthly basis.
Surprise victory: Walley was sick in the days leading up to the final round of the Travis Tritt talent contest. She drank lots of water and prayed prior to performing, but was still shocked at the outcome. “I wasn’t expecting to win at all,” she said.
Top accessory: Walley loves cowgirl boots. “I sort of like mixing rock star and country together,” she said.
Take that, Taylor: Walley’s not too keen on writing songs about boys. “They’re just very overdone,” she said. Instead, Walley pointed to “Stronger” -- her original song about foster care.
Learn more here.