Garth Brooks’ first tour in 10 years hasn’t even started yet, and it already has a few wrinkles. The country singer, known for the raucous drinking song “Friends In Low Places” and for embarrassing himself with alter ego Chris Gaines, retired from music and touring in 2001. With his youngest daughter just graduated from high school, Brooks announced a world comeback tour that would begin at Dublin’s massive 90,000-seat Croke Park Stadium, with five shows later this month. That’s 450,000 tickets, or almost the entire population of Dublin.
But the Dublin city council—perhaps worried that more than three performances of “The Dance” could result in a citywide Kleenex shortage—has ruled that Brooks must cancel two of the five shows, even though he’s already sold 400,000 tickets. Brooks issued a statement saying he would do all five of the shows or none of them. In a simile that makes no sense anywhere but in a country song, he also added, “To choose which shows to do and which shows not to do, would be like asking to choose one child over another.”
Brooks will hold a press conference on Thursday that will stream live on garthbrooks.com, during which he will presumably address the situation. In a related story, tickets are now half-price for Chris Gaines’ six-night stand at The Ginger Man on Dublin’s Fenian Street (capacity: 71).