Entertainment, On A High Note

Kenny Rogers will fold ’em with final star-packed concert


“The Gambler” is going out with a winning hand. On Tuesday morning (July 18) at a press conference in Nashville, Kenny Rogers announced that his final concert, Oct. 25th at Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena, will feature a star-studded lineup of longtime friends and former duet partners. The concert is being billed as “All in for The Gambler: Kenny Rogers Farewell Concert Celebration” and tickets will go on sale July 21st.

Already on board for Rogers’ farewell are Dolly Parton, Little Big Town, Alison Krauss, and his current touring partner Linda Davis. More artists will likely be revealed as the date gets closer.

The legendary singer is bowing out after more than 60 years in the entertainment business, starting out as a jazz bassist and vocalist. He joined the folk group The New Christy Minstrels in the late 1960’s before helping form the folk/rock band The First Edition, later renamed Kenny Rogers and The First Edition. That group scored radio-friendly hits like “Reuben James,” “Something’s Burning” and others, driven by Rogers’ distinctive raspy vocals.

Rogers went solo and turned to country music full-time in the 1970’s. He racked up a slew of No. 1 hits, beginning with “Lucille” in 1977 and continuing through to “Daytime Friends,” his signature tune “The Gambler,” and “Lady.” Many of those hits found similar success on the pop charts, establishing Rogers as a true crossover artist who could connect with all audiences.

He was also known for recording duets with female partners like Parton, Dottie West, Sheena Easton, and others. His teaming with Parton on “Islands in the Stream” in 1983 is considered one of history’s all-time great duets. Rogers won the CMA Male Vocalist of the Year honor in 1979 and was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2013.

Rogers announced his final world tour in 2016, which continues to the present day. But before Rogers folds his hand for good, he’ll have his Oct. 25th goodbye gig to look forward to. “I’m excited about seeing all these people again,” Rogers noted at the press conference. “It will be an exciting send-off for me. We’re going to make things happen.”

Of course, the Nashville show will also mark the final performance for the iconic duo of Rogers and Parton. “I know it will be a moving experience for us standing on that stage together one last time,” Rogers said in a statement about the concert. That’s a moment you won’t want to miss.

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