Florida Georgia Line plays up familiar roots at State Farm Center


Hannah Auten

Florida Georgia Line performed at the State Farm Center on Thursday.

By Emma Palatnik, Staff Writer

The State Farm Center welcomed another country group on Thursday night: Florida Georgia Line.

The first opening act was Chris Lane. Lane toured with FGL in 2014 on their “This is How We Roll Tour.”

Toward the end of his set, Lane performed a mash-up of pop music, adding a country touch to it.

“Champaign, if you came to have fun on a Thursday night say, okay!” Lane said.

The country singer launched into songs like “I Want It That Way,” “I Can’t Feel My Face” and “Want You to Want Me.”

Get The Daily Illini in your inbox!

  • Catch the latest on University of Illinois news, sports, and more. Delivered every weekday.
  • Stay up to date on all things Illini sports. Delivered every Monday.
This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.
Thank you for subscribing!

“Are you ready to take it to the next level?” Lane said.

He then performed “Bye Bye Bye” by the Backstreet Boys, fans sang along with him and moved to the music.

For his final song, Lane performed his first number one hit: “Fix.” During the song, the microphone stand glowed in alternating colors. 

Lane said there would be a meet and greet after the second opener Dustin Lynch’s set.

There was a stage transition to make the stage fit the next performer’s needs. A platform with steps was added and the lights changed for Dustin Lynch’s love-focused set. 

“This is one of my favorite songs that we recorded, it’s about love,” Lynch said.

Lynch then sang “Love Me or Leave Me Alone.” The audience shouted the words with him.

The artist shared songs about other kinds of love as well, like the love of grandparents. Lynch said he wrote his song “Cowboys and Angels,” about his grandparents’ love story.

To end the performance, Lynch performed the rock song “Pour Some Sugar on Me.”

The lights dimmed to signal the end, and the singer thanked his fans because they’ve changed his life.

After another set shift, it was time for Florida Georgia Line to perform.

During the change, parts of the floor were removed to reveal a tree on the stage, to go along with the “Dig Your Roots” tour name. Later in the set, inflatable trees came up on stage.

The duo started off on suspended platforms with “This is How We Do.”

After a couple songs, the group paused the concert and brought a young girl named Leah on stage. They gave her a guitar and signed it, but she had to promise to learn how to play. Leah started to leave the stage, but then announced that it was her birthday.

“How about we have 10,000 people sing ‘Happy Birthday’?” the band said.

The audience and performers joined in unison so wish the fan a happy 11th birthday.

FGL dedicated their song “Holy” to their wives. In another song, a video played on the three screens showing clips of their weddings and important moments they’ve spent as married couples.

During one song, they brought a golden retriever out with them. The dog, wearing protective headphones, trotted up and down the stage and out onto the thrust.

In true concert tradition, audience members turned on their cell phone flashlights and stuck them in the air for “Shine On.’

FGL made sure to honor their mothers as well.

“Meet the amazing mothers,” the duo said as photos of their moms flashed on the screens behind them. “We really wish they could be here, but they’re not, so we’ll keep drinking.”

The band launched into a music clip section where they sang music such as “This is How We Do It,” and “Jump Around.”

The lights went black, but the concert wasn’t over yet. They still had one more song to play, their hit: “Cruise.” The audience screamed, sang, and danced along to the song. One of the members even took off his shirt, and fans screamed louder.

The band thanked their fans before leaving the packed arena to thunderous applause. 

[email protected]