Those who have followed her country music career for more than two decades know that there is nothing Miranda Lambert can’t and won’t conquer. From winning more Academy of Country Music Awards than any other artist in history to three Grammy statues and eight studio albums, the queen of modern country reigns supreme.
Miranda Lambert’s MuttNation Foundation provides 2 million meals for pets in need
When her Velvet Rodeo residency rolled into Las Vegas’ Zappos Theater at Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino on Friday (September 23) for the first of 24 dates, Lambert ticked another important career box — packing a Sin City venue with it a career-spanning repertoire of hits, many from recent albums palomino and The Marfa Tapes.
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The girls’ weekend crowd turned up ready to party, and the crowd — mostly women like Lambert — was packed with rhinestone-studded cowgirl boots and hats, sequined fringed jackets, cut-off jeans, flannel shirts and trucker hats.
Pinned to a graphic resembling Lambert’s pistols and angel wing tattoo, the stage screen let Lambert fans know they’d come to the right place to rock.
As the stage lights came on, the Queen took center stage in a blue and gold mini dress with fringed accents and of course a sparkly hat. For 90 minutes, she rolled through her hits, both new and established, just like the Rodeo, from 2022’s “Actin'” to 2005’s “Kerosin,” complete with a storm of pyrotechnics. Lambert skilfully hopped between albums, with nearly all represented, and showcased her signature velvety vocal range. On “Fastest Girl in Town,” she grabbed the guitar and whipped her hair back and forth with ecstatic energy.
For many, it was the first time they heard songs from 2022 palomino and the 2021s Marfa tapes live. Strange emerged as an instant classic. To guide the audience, the visuals closely matched the lyrics, with montages of dancing cowboy hats, a small-town theater tent, and starry desert nights.
Notable here is that Lambert avoided the Las Vegas residency format. Outside of the standard stage salutes, Lambert stuck to the songs, with no lengthy storytelling surrounding the music. She also limited it to one outfit with a few modifications, unlike her country music peers like Carrie Underwood and Shania Twain, whose shows featured multiple looks.
Wondering if there are “cowgirls in the house”? delivered a thunderous response, and she also thanked the crush “for spending your hard-earned money on some country music… this is a reminder to always be yourself no matter what… ’cause you could be on a stage in Vegas.” land with bright lights, who knows ?”
Lambert got the crowd singing along on 2009’s “House That Built Me,” as did “Drunk (And I Don’t Wanna Go Home).” A roar swept the room on 2022’s “Geraldene,” which had the razor-sharp line “You’re too late baby, I’m the only b—- in the band.” “Tin Man” from the raw album together Marfa tapes, was particularly beautiful with its punctiform headlights towering high above Lambert like a galaxy of celestial bodies. Her jacket burst into flames on Gunpowder and Lead. The show ended with a torrent of confetti and an audience of Lambert fans well fed.
The evening concluded with a Velvet Rodeo afterparty, where invited guests sipped on Pretty Bitchin’s Jack Daniels signature cocktails and enjoyed tacos and churros. Clad in a gold leopard mini dress, Lambert hung out near the bar with husband Brendan McLoughlin before taking the stage while he was presented with a cake topped with a disco ball in a cowgirl hat presented by senior vice president Amanda Moore of Las Vegas Residencies by Live Nation -Saunders.
Ahead of the show, Lambert pulled back the curtain for her Instagram followers, revealing the pre-stage routine and the very lucrative marketing and branding opportunities that exist for Las Vegas headliners. With her beloved puppies in tow, Lambert showed them riding to the theater and then thanked Caesars Entertainment and Live Nation for their donation to their MuttNation Foundation.
Lambert’s residency resumes on Saturday (September 24) and has dates through early April.
Additional reporting by Jennifer Avison Smith.
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