"It was kind of like a rowdy club show," he smiles. "It's a little different from my shows, where people are there just to see me. This is almost like word-of-mouth: 'Hey, there's a party going on at Fremont!"
He notes that he loves the fun of winning over an audience that may or may not be familiar with his tunes, even his smash hits "Beer Money" and "Somethin’ ‘Bout a Truck."
"They may not necessarily know your music," he says. "It's more of a challenge for me, that's what I like about it."
That sense of informality--as well as a little bit of gambling--is something that Moore looks forward to most of all when making the annual country-music trek to Las Vegas for the ACM Awards. In addition to testing out a new song ("Backseat") on the Fremont audience--"They dug it!"--Moore likes being able to hang with friends he doesn't have time to see while out playing shows across the country all year.
There's no other weekend that brings all of Nashville together in quite the same manner, he observes. "We're in a party town. The country music community--there's a big camaraderie. We're all really good friends. Although we compete against each other, we do pull for each other," he explains.
"The cool thing is so many of us started coming through the ranks years ago...You lose touch once things start taking off, and that's the cool thing about Vegas. It forces you to all be together, and that's what I love about the ACMs."
Moore's busy schedule has him back out on the road after his short pit stop in Vegas--in addition to his own slate of headlining shows, he'll be joining Toby Keith's tour in June. He's also working on a new record, which he hopes to start cutting next month, release a new single from in late summer, and have complete and ready for fans at the start of next year. Touring nonstop means that most of his songwriting has to take place exactly where you'd expect--in the back of the tour bus. He says he'll be cutting the record "in spaces," partially just due to the logistics of his packed calendar.
"I write nonstop--it never stops for me," he says, matter-of-factly. "I get a lot of stuff started on the tour bus, and then go home for two days and finish it up."
Moore explains that he doesn't mind the necessity of having to create material on the road. In fact, he says it actually helps his process: "Being on the road is a great habitat for creating new music because there's so many different experiences. My writing has changed so much, because my lifestyle is so different now. So i like being out here and writing."
One thing Moore also likes, but won't be indulging in while he is in Sin City? He's willing to gamble with new music on the stage, but you won't catch him at the tables! He admits he does enjoy Blackjack--but, "I lose every time--every single time--so I have learned to keep my money in my pocket," he laughs.
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