A crowd covered in denim, lace and cowboy boots gathered on the plaza Tuesday night at CityPlace in West Palm Beach to watch country music star Chase Rice perform. Rice was there to kickoff the venue’s Country Music Concert Series, but the audience was clearly there to party; one group drank moonshine from mason jars while another was taking turns sitting on top of their companions’ shoulders to spot the Florida-native singer-songwriter.
The audience couldn’t wait for Rice to take the stage, as evidenced by the cheering of his name and their willingness to wait in the rain. Despite the grey skies and lack of covered area, the party went on as Rice and his guitarist, Brandon Autry, took the stage and began the concert with a crowd favorite, “Country Girl,” followed by the popular “Country In Ya.”
Rice’s performance was well received by the audience and employed his environment to his advantage: “Let’s make all of these shops pissed that we’re here,” he shouted, as the crowd yelled back even louder.
Rice prides himself on his combination of musical inspirations, which set him apart from the rest of the country scene. Borrowing a little George Straight and Garth Brooks as well as Eminem and Wiz Khalifa, Rice creates a new genre that is upbeat and party-inducing.
First recognized as the runner-up to “Survivor: Nicaragua” winner Jud “Fabio” Birza, Rice also co-wrote one of the most popular songs on the radio of 2014: “Cruise” by Florida Georgia Line. If there was any question this country star had a major following, this concert answered it. From the women line-dancing to the children clapping, his following is a diverse and supportive one. His quickly growing fan base is not expected to lessen its presence any time soon.
Rice hasn’t signed with a major record label or enjoyed formal radio play, but Autry confirmed to Boca Raton magazine that Rice has officially signed with Columbia Sony, which will begin to distribute his hit single, “Ready Set Roll,” to country radio.
Rice is set to continue his cross-country tour at least through September. As for the Country Music Concert Series, look out for actress and up-and-coming country music singer Jana Rae Kramer on July 9 at CityPlace Plaza.
Country In Ya
How She Rolls
Ready Set Roll
Kelsey Howard is a recent college graduate who earned her Bachelor of Arts in mass communications with a concentration in magazine journalism at the University of South Florida. Kelsey is an editorial intern this summer at Boca Raton magazine. She is 21 years old with a passion to explore the world and write about it along the way. You can contact Kelsey at email@example.com or 941/306-9158 or view her portfolio here.