Country heavyweights old and new highlight the RodeoHouston 2012 lineup — along with a few squeal-worthy pop heartthrobs.
This year’s schedule includes supergroups Lady Antebellum (March 1), back for a fourth consecutive year; and first-timer the Band Perry (March 14), whose If I Die Young became one of the biggest country hits of the last two years. Lady A’s 2011 performance drew more than 70,000 fans to Reliant Stadium. Expect both dates to boast big numbers.
Power couple Blake Shelton (March 7) and Miranda Lambert (March 13) should also prove strong draws. Both are enjoying commercial peaks in their careers. Shelton has scored five consecutive No. 1 singles on Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart, and Lambert’s four studio albums have all hit the top of the album chart. Her 2011 RodeoHouston show currently ranks fourth in all-time paid attendance (73,811).
Grand dame Reba McEntire returns March 9 for Paint the Rodeo Pink Day, a salute to breast cancer survivors. McEntire has performed 16 times and was inducted into the Star Trail of Fame in 2007. She is one of only five entertainers who have performed in front of more than 1 million rodeo fans.
Alabama kicks it all off Feb. 28, also the start of the band’s first tour in eight years. This will be the veteran group’s 11th time on the revolving stage (and first since 2003). A November teaser announcement included Alabama, Nickelodeon boy band Big Time Rush, Zac Brown Band and Brad Paisley.
Also returning are Texas trio ZZ Top (March 8) for a fifth time and chart-topper Jason Aldean (March 15) for a third consecutive year. Crossover heartthrob Enrique Iglesias (March 6) is back for the first time since 2004, thanks to the worldwide success of current album Euphoria. An Iglesias show regularly incites frenzied female reactions, so security will likely be on high alert. (No jumping the rails!)
Kid Rock headlines Armed Forces Appreciation Day (Feb. 29), and John Legend is back for Black Heritage Day. Both are returning for a second time.
Making debuts this year, alongside the Band Perry, are Luke Bryan (March 3); Big Time Rush (March 4, with China Anne McClain from A.N.T. Farm and the McClain Sisters); Nashville Star winner Chris Young (March 10); La Original Banda El Limon (March 11, as part of Go Tejano Day with Duelo); and — soccer mom alert! — Train (March 16), still riding on Soul Sister success.
Feb. 28 -- Alabama
Feb. 29 -- Kid Rock
March 1 -- Lady Antebellum
March 2 -- John Legend
March 3 -- Luke Bryan
March 4 -- Big Time Rush, China Anne McClain from A.N.T Farm, the McClain Sisters
March 5 -- Eli Young Band
March 6 -- Enrique Iglesias
March 7 -- Blake Shelton
March 8 -- ZZ Top
March 9 -- Reba McEntire
March 10 -- Chris Young
March 11 -- Go Tejano Day with Duelo, La Original Banda El Limon
March 12 -- Zac Brown Band
March 13 -- Miranda Lambert
March 14 -- The Band Perry
March 15 -- Jason Aldean
March 16 -- Train
March 17 -- Brad Paisley
March 18 -- Alan Jackson
Season tickets are on sale now and start at $336 per seat. Mini-season tickets, which include nine performances, include seating in the loge and upper levels of Reliant Stadium. Prices range from $146-$189 per ticket. These can only be purchased by calling the ticket office (832-667-1080), visiting the ticket windows on the second floor of Reliant Center or at rodeohouston.com. (Black Heritage Day and Go Tejano Day are not included in Mini-season ticket options.)
Value Day Wednesdays will return, with upper-level tickets for $10. Regular individual tickets are $18-$300 (for chute seats, which are located directly behind the bucking chutes and include food and drinks) and go on sale at 10 a.m. Saturday via rodeohouston.com, all Ticketmaster locations or by calling 800-726-1313.
Ticketmaster locations will begin distributing linestubs at 9 a.m. Saturday. There is a 10-ticket limit for first-day sales of Big Time Rush, Iglesias, Aldean and Paisley. Tickets will be available at the Reliant Park box office, with no service charge, beginning Monday.