I’ve been fortunate to see some great acts over the years. I started thinking about my favorite concerts in the early part of 2022. Looking at my calendar, I’d have the chance to see Elton John (rescheduled from 2020) and Willie Nelson (rescheduled from 2021) — two of the greatest to ever do it.
I’ll end up having to wait to see Sir Elton. A positive COVID case meant another reschedule for his Dallas concert. Want to talk about bad luck? My wife and I have had tickets to 3 Elton John concerts and never successfully seen him. In all cases, the concert has been cancelled or rescheduled.
Instead of seeing Elton perform the evening of January 26, 2022, I’m sitting here writing about my favorite concerts.
Here’s my list of favorites with a bucket list at the end:
1. Paul McCartney
I’ve been lucky enough to see Sir Paul perform four times over the years. Three of those were solo Paul McCartney concerts (Dallas 2002, Little Rock 2016, Arlington 2019) and the fourth times was at the concert below. I’m a huge Beatles fan and seeing McCartney in concert is an absolute history lesson.
With the exception of Michael Jackson, it’s hard for me to imagine a more impactful and entertaining concert.
2. 2021 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony
When my wife and I were offered the opportunity to attend the 2021 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony and concert in Cleveland, Ohio, we knew we couldn’t pass it up. It was even better than we imagined. We saw Taylor Swift, Carole King, Jennifer Hudson, Christina Aguilera, Foo Fighters, Paul McCartney, The Go-Go’s, LL Cool J, Eminem, Jennifer Lopez, and many more. Talk about a fun event!
We’ve seen U2 twice — both times at AT&T Stadium and both incredible concerts. They are my wife’s favorite band, and I’d gladly see them again in the future!
4. Garth Brooks
So this one really surprised me! I’m really not that much of a Garth Brooks fan, but I figured it was worth attending one of his concerts. Man o man, he puts on one heck of a show! I didn’t even know the songs, and I was attempting to sing along from the top deck.
Garth is one heck of a showman! If he ever makes a stop in your area, it’s well worth the cost of a ticket.
5. The Chicks
I’ve seen the former Dixie Chicks twice and Court Yard Hounds (two of the band’s members) once. Whether you agree with their politics or not, they put on a great show and have released some excellent music over the last few decades.
6. The Eagles
So there’s an embarrassing story about The Eagles. I went to my first Eagles concert to try and impress my then girlfriend (now my wife). Walking into the concert, I couldn’t name any of their songs. Quite frankly, I wasn’t really sure who they were — or so I thought.
As I sat there listening, I could hum along to about every song. Why? That’s the music my mom played in the car when I was a kid. Thanks Ron Chapman and 103.7 KVIL FM.
7. Guns N Roses
I wasn’t quite sure what to expect when I saw Guns N Roses in concert at an outdoor football stadium in Little Rock, Arkansas. But boy, they absolutely rocked! It was an amazing atmosphere and one heck of a show.
While I’m a much bigger fan of the next performer on this countdown, the Guns N Roses concert was more memorable.
8. Stevie Wonder
The great Stevie Wonder is one of my absolute favorite singers and songwriters. I’ve been fortunate to see him in concert twice. The Wonder concerts I went to were a little milder and mellow than some of the concerts highlighted above. For that reason, he appears a little lower than he should on this countdown.
Sorry, Stevie! I’d see you again!
9. The Rolling Stones
Now some of you are going, “what the heck is wrong with this guy putting the Stones this low on the list?!?” The Rolling Stones put on an incredible show, and I was fortunate enough to get to see them perform at AT&T Stadium on my birthday. It was one heck of a show with great energy, but The Stones just aren’t my preferred cup of tea. #TeamBeatles
10. Celine Dion
I don’t have a picture of this concert to share with you because cell phone weren’t a thing when I saw Celine Dion in concert in Las Vegas. I’m going to guess it was 2001. She was great and so were the theatrics going on around her.
The best part? I went by myself! It’s a great story to tell at parties.
“Near, far, wherever you are…” 😭😭
11. Peter, Paul, & Mary
To be fair, I can’t remember this concert. I have one vague memory showing up with a picture I drew of Puff The Magic Dragon. If I remember right, we gave it to a security guard who promised he’d give it to the band backstage. My day was made!
Based on convos with my parents and a Google search, it looks like this concert was at Dallas’ Park Central Amphitheater in August of 1986. That would’ve put me at 5 years old.
“Puff” was, and still is, one of my favorites.
12. James Taylor
James Taylor was absolutely great. In fact, I love listening to his music when I need to take a nap or when it’s raining outside.
It was a fun show, but I’d rather hear him in a hipster coffee shop than a gigantic arena.
13. Randy Travis
We were able to see Randy Travis at a fairly intimate dinner show in Abilene, Texas around 2010. As you might imagine, it was a fun evening. Interestingly enough, I rediscovered Travis’ tunes during the stay-at-home order of 2020 during the coronavirus pandemic. I spent many a work day listening to his greatest hits while churning out stories about COVID-19.
“I’m gonna love you forever and ever
Forever and ever, amen.”
14. Charley Pride
We also had the chance to listen to Charley Pride perform at a dinner show in Abilene. If I recall, it was a benefit for West Texas Rehab.
Pride is an absolute groundbreaker in country music and it was a pleasure to see him do his thing. As you’ll see below, he absolutely loved meeting us! Look at that smile!
15. Lauren Daigle
My daughter introduced us to Lauren Daigle, and we were able to see her in concert right before the world shut down in 2020. What a voice!
One cool thing she does at her concerts (or at least this one): She encouraged the crowd to sign up for a program to financially support a child in need. I thought it was a great way to use her platform for good.
16. Bob Dylan
You’re wondering why I have one of the greatest songwriters in American history this low on the list. I get it so allow me to explain.
We saw Dylan at the House of Blues in Dallas in 2008. He performed all his hits, but I couldn’t understand one word he sang. I told my wife it was like listening to the male version of Charlie Brown’s teacher sing.
Don’t hate me, but it’s true…
17. Matt Maher
When the world started to open up again in 2021, we were able to see Christian singer Matt Maher in his first concert following the coronavirus pandemic. It was an intimate concert that served as a fundraiser for our daughter’s school.
It was a short but fun concert. There were probably 100 people there so there wasn’t a bad seat in the house. That made the event pretty special.
Before you ask yourself if this is a joke, let me assure you it is not. I saw Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas, Tionne “T-Boz” Watkins, and Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes in concert as an 11-year-old at Six Flags Over Texas.
I called my dad up to confirm that he took me and a few friends to the show.
The amphitheater there had bench seating, and I remember everyone standing on the seat to watch the concert and physically shaking the theater. As a little preteen, I couldn’t see a thing. If I recall, we ended up leaving early — but what a story to tell, huh?
19. Willie Nelson
Willie Nelson at 19? Are you crazy? Maybe. I love Willie. In fact, we plan to see him in concert this year.
However, I saw him back in 2003 perform following horse races. You couldn’t really hear or see him. I think the track was hoping we had enough Shiners to not notice. Unfortunately, that was not the case.
20. Bon Jovi
I will probably always keep this concert at the bottom of the list just for fun. You’re saying “how could Bon Jovi be in the 20 spot?” It’s an interesting story.
We actually sat in a suite to watch this concert — which should make it a great experience, right? Not exactly. The suite was full of contest winners from our TV station; we essentially served as the babysitters. No one knew each other, and it felt like an awkward dinner party. If I would’ve thought better, I wouldn’t played party host and done some sort of an icebreaker to ease things up. Maybe that wouldn’t made it a more pleasurable experience?
With that, here’s my bucket list of concerts I’d like to attend. Who am I missing and what’s your favorite concert? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below.
Concert Bucket List
- Elton John
- Lionel Richie
- Dolly Parton
- Smoky Robinson