The Comeback Kids

There are a few things we can establish from the recent Garth Brooks ticket mania: a lot of Irish people love country music, Brooks has a huge appreciation of our little island and he’s kicking off his world tour here which makes us special.

Brooks tickets are hot property at the moment from the die-hard fans to those jumping on the bandwagon. He sold out five concerts in Croke Park within hours. This will be the first time ever an artist will play Croke Park for five consecutive nights. So will he manage to last the five days? Or more importantly, will his live up to the glory of his 1994 tour? In reaction to the rush for tickets Brooks says he’s “flattered, humbled and scared to death”.

In his 1994 tour Brooks was aged 32. Twenty years older and less fit, he will attempt to pull off another memorable Irish tour.

With a welcome that might well put Obama’s visit to shame, here are some other comeback tours that made quite a stir in Ireland.

The Ultimate Tour-Take That
A lot of people, mostly females, were overjoyed when Take That announced a reunion tour for 2006. Ten years after the boys went their separate ways, the band re grouped with the exception of the most successful member Robbie Williams. However Williams absence didn’t stop fans enthusiasm for a Take That comeback. The tour was the fastest selling in UK history. In 2006 they wowed the crowds in The Point (now The O2) and the RDS with favourites such as “Relight my Fire”, “A Million Love Songs” and “Back for Good”.

Nothing But Love World Tour- Whitney Houston
The late diva made a less than impressive comeback in 2010. It was her first tour in the UK and Ireland in 11 years. She played three nights in The 02. Concert goers flocked on Joe Duffy’s show after the first concert, demanding a refund. The six time Grammy winner was 46 years old at the time of touring and a shell of the powerhouse vocalist she once was. Fans said she was disorientated and that her voice was hoarse. Paddy Power was offering odds for mishaps that may occur when she took stage in Ireland including 5-1 that she would forget any words to her songs. Eventually she cancelled her European tour. It was a sad spectacle; a once incredibly talented woman whose career ended disastrously.

NKOTBSB Tour- New Kids on the Block and The Backstreet Boys
In 2012 these two huge 90’s pop bands produced a love child called NKOTBSB. Or in other words, they went on tour together. New Kids on the Block called it quits in 1994. By that stage they were the highest paid entertainers of the 90’s according to Forbes. Eighteen years later the boys decided to regroup, this time touring alongside the equally successful pop group, The Backstreet Boys. This was the ultimate dream tour for any 80’s and 90’s kids. They played in the Belfast Odyssey Arena and O2 Dublin. The tour received a largely positive response with both bands receiving praise for their energetic performances.

Martina Brophy

image: James Downing via Flickr

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