Five years after completing one of the most successful tours in country music history, multi-platinum powerhouses Big & Rich and Gretchen Wilson will hit the road for “Xtreme Muzik The Tour.” The extravaganza, which will include special guests Cowboy Troy and Two Foot Fred, will visit over 30 cities beginning June 18, 2011 in Springfield, Missouri.

Sharing one eight-piece band on a custom stage that includes, of course, a fully-operational bar as the centerpiece, the unique show will offer something to fans rarely seen in modern touring – the co-headliners will rarely leave the stage. The music will not stop, as Big & Rich and Gretchen perform hit after hit and often join in on each other’s songs.

“We’ve been talking about this for quite a while, and we really put a lot of blood, sweat and tears into putting together a show we feel the fans will walk away and say, ‘wow, I’ve never seen anything like that,’” said Gretchen. “You’re going to see me come out and sing on Big & Rich songs, you’re going to see John and Kenny sing on my songs, and there’s no telling where Two-Foot and Cowboy Troy will be!”

“They’ll be up at the bar,” quipped John. “You know, this crew started out with a bunch of us hanging out in little clubs playing all kinds of music,” he added, paying homage to the MuzikMafia movement they started years ago in Nashville. “We want to give our fans not just a great night of music but an experience they’ll talk about for a long time.”

“We’ve been friends for so long,” said Big Kenny, “writing, recording, touring and even watching our kids grow up together. John and I have both done solo projects, which were fun, but we’re ready to get out and make some Big & Rich noise! This set is custom-designed to deliver all the hits that everybody wants to hear.”

A rack of guitars will line the bar, and the bartender will double as the guitar tech – the roadie in charge of keeping all the axes tuned between songs and has them ready whenever a change is needed or a string breaks. Of course, she will also be mixing libations for the performers and any special guest(s) who might be lucky enough to catch the show from that xtreme vantage point.

Grammy-nominated super duo Big & Rich set country music on its ear when their “Save A Horse (Ride A Cowboy)” single and video hit the airwaves in 2004. Their Horse of a Different Color, Comin’ To Your City and Between Raising Hell and Amazing Grace albums were met with critical and commercial success, and countless miles of touring followed. In 2008, the award-winning duo announced they would go on hiatus while Big Kenny recovered from a pre-existing neck injury. In the years that followed, with mutual blessings, each released solo albums.

Big Kenny followed his “Love Everybody” heart across the globe, where he worked tirelessly in the Sudan’s war-torn Darfur region, helped deliver medical supplies and entertain aid workers in Haiti following the devastating earthquake and more. He was the sole writer on Tim McGraw’s #1 hit “Last Dollar (Fly Away)”.

John went on to host three seasons of CMT’s wildly-popular “Gone Country” show, scored a solo hit with the hard-hitting “Shuttin’ Detroit Down,” produced records on Jewel, Randy Owen, the JaneDear girls and published Jason Aldean’s smash duet with Kelly Clarkson “Don’t You Wanna Stay.” He is now a contender on the top-rated “Celebrity Apprentice” working feverishly for his favorite charity, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

Gretchen Wilson exploded onto the country music scene in 2004 with her smash hit “Redneck Woman” and has since scored three #1 albums. The critically-acclaimed singer/songwriter has won virtually every award for which she’s been nominated, including trophies from the Grammys, ACM, CMA, AMA and more. Her first book, the autobiographical “Redneck Woman: Stories from My Life,” landed her on the prestigious New York Times Best Seller List. Her newest album, I Got Your Country Right Here, is currently in stores, and her “I’d Love To Be Your Last” single is hitting radio now. She was nominated for two Grammy Awards this year. Since earning her GED in 2007, Gretchen has become an outspoken advocate for adult education and literacy. Last year, she partnered with the Dollar General Literacy Foundation and the Ad Council to encourage young adults to achieve their GED.

Standing 6’5” (before he straps on his boots and hat) Cowboy Troy is a force to be reckoned with. When his Warner Bros./Raybaw debut, Loco Motive, debuted at #2 on the Billboard Country Albums chart, the industry could not deny that something unique was going on. The lead single, “I Play Chicken With The Train,” became the #1 country download at the iTunes music store. The little Loco Motive that could has since gone on to sell some 342,000 copies.

John Rich met Two Foot Fred Gill in a bar (of all places) in 1998 in Nashville. John was blown away by the passion Fred had for life and his ability to look at the good in all things. They kept in touch over the next several years and in December of 2004, Fred received a message from John Rich asking him to be in the upcoming Big & Rich video. Fred agreed, and the rest is history.

For “Xtreme Muzic The Tour” dates, venues, ticket information and more, visit any of the following websites, as tour dates continue to be added and announced.

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Author: James McQuiston

Ph.D. in Political Science, Kent State University. I have been the editor at NeuFutur / since I was 15. Looking for new staff members all the time; email me if you are interested. Thanks!

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