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Photo courtesy of Matthew Berinato / Kane Brown will perform May 7 at Finley Stadium.

Performing in front of his hometown crowd has always been special to Kane Brown, but his Saturday show at Finley Stadium has even more meaning to the country music star. He performed in front of a near-record crowd on the Bud Light Stage at Riverbend in 2016 and did two shows at Track 29 before that.

(READ MORE: Hometown kid Kane Brown to perform tonight at Riverbend and fulfill a longtime dream)

"But I wasn't show-ready then," he said in a telephone interview. "This will be my first time back since that Riverbend show."

It will also be his first big show as the headliner, and he said he has instructed the people who work with him to make it the biggest show of his career.

"Pull out all the stops. Fireworks, everything," he said.

Finley Stadium Executive Director Chris Thomas said that he has been having weekly meetings with Brown's team and he believes the show will be an impressive display of sound and visuals.

If you go

— What: Kane Brown’s Blessed & Free Tour with special guest Walker Hayes

— When: 7 p.m. Saturday, May 7; gates open at 5 p.m.

— Where: Finley Stadium, 1826 Reggie White Blvd.

— Tickets: $22-$299 at axs.com

— Phone: 423-266-4041

"It should be staggering," he said.

"I've seen the plans and let me tell you, it's going to be amazing."

Brown said the "kid" who performed here six years ago was "more worried about what people thought. I was having fun, but I wasn't having fun. It was more like going through the motions.

(READ MORE: Meet Chattanooga's Kane Brown? Could he be the next big country star?)

"I was doing a lot of covers [of songs by other people], and I didn't interact with the crowd. I would sing songs and just get through the show. "Now when I'm on stage, I try to make people laugh and tell stories, and I even single people out in the crowd."

He said the change in him has been noticed by longtime fans and the people he works with every day.

"They say I'm like a comedian up there. They never know what I'm going to say or do."

Jokes or no, Brown also delivers the goods when it comes to his songs. A five-time American Music Award winner, he can also lay claim to having two songs in the Top 10 most-streamed songs of all time in 'Heaven" and "What Ifs"

Billboard called him the "future of country." Time listed him as one of "31 People Changing the South."

(READ MORE: Chattanooga native Kane Brown being named to 'Time 100' list not surprising to those who know him)

He is notable in the country music world for his blending of musical styles including country, rap, rock and some pop.

His debut self-titled album debuted at No. 1, spent a record-breaking 13 weeks at the top of the chart and made him the first artist in Billboard history to top all five Billboard country charts simultaneously. His sophomore album, "Experiment," debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 all-genre chart, making him the first male country artist in more than 24 years to do so.

(READ MORE: Former Chattanoogan Kane Brown reflects on rise to country music stardom)

 

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Kane Brown appears on-screen as he performs "One Mississippi" at the CMT Music Awards on April 11, 2022, at the Municipal Auditorium in Nashville. / AP Photo/Mark Humphrey

"I don't think about stuff like that, but I am competitive and I want to top whatever I've done," he said. "Having 'Heaven' and 'What Ifs' go No. 1 from my debut was great, but like with this next project, which I'm excited about, I keep thinking 'What other song can I add to those two?' "

Brown said while he still loves doing some cover songs and includes a mashup of other artists' hits in his shows, there is something special about performing songs he has written.

Like "Bury Me in Georgia."

"That's one I'll be doing at Finley from the new project," which he hopes to release in late summer or early fall. "It's about Chattanooga, or the Chattanooga area really."

Brown said initially he wanted to make his Chattanooga return at McKenzie Arena because his Blessed & Free tour was doing mostly arenas.

(READ MORE: Kane Brown to play all 29 NBA arenas as part of new tour)

"No disrespect to McKenzie, but we waited too long and it's not big enough. Tickets are selling really well, and it's going to be a big show."

On a personal level, he plans to come in a few days early to hang out with family, friends and former classmates from the schools he attended in the Chattanooga area.

"I love Chattanooga and love being proud to be from there," he said.

Contact Barry Courter at bcourter@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6354. Follow him on Twitter @BarryJC.

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Singer Kane Brown arrives on the red carpet before the Ruffles All-Star celebrity game in Cleveland, Ohio, on Feb. 18, 2022.
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