We don’t get many of them. Good Mondays. This Monday in particular was supposed to be one of those rare "good Mondays." Great weather all weekend, no Packers loss to mourn. We all were supposed to get up, do our normal routine and start the week off with a good Monday.
However, I assume most everyone woke up to the same nightmare I did. If it wasn’t seeing the word "Vegas" in every social media post, it was hearing the word 50 times on the news, and they weren’t talking about the temperature.
My normal morning has me up between 2 and 3 a.m. I begrudgingly turn off my alarm, grab my phone and page through Twitter to see if anything significant happened overnight. Most nights there’s not much. I wish this morning was the same.
Gun shots!!! Vegas. Pray to god. Love you guys. Love you Pearl. — Jake Owen (@jakeowen) October 2, 2017
"Gun shots!!! Vegas. Pray to god. Love you guys. Love you Pearl," was the first tweet I saw, from Jake Owen. As I scrolled down, it was tweet after tweet of the same. Knowing Jake Owen was in Vegas performing at the Route 91 Harvest Festival, an outdoor country music event, I began to piece things together.
As I saw more and more about what happened, the video of country superstar Jason Aldean standing on stage singing, as shots were breaking out all around him came onto my screen. As people ran for their lives, Jason simply stopped, held his guitar up and ran off stage. It was in that moment it all hit me, and Jake Owen’s tweet brought me to tears.
As a dad to be any day now, I realize Jake was tweeting what he thought could be his last tweet, and he wanted his daughter to know he loved her. He literally thought his life was in danger.
I then began to think about others I know that were there at the show, from artists I’ve met to people in the record industry to others I’ve worked with in country radio. Country music and country radio are a very tightly knit community.
Played Route 91 in Vegas the night before last. We were all singing. I'm in shock over this. Heartbroken for all those lives taken too soon. — MAREN MORRIS (@MarenMorris) October 2, 2017
Many of the artists that were playing this festival in Vegas are going to be here in Milwaukee in the next few weeks. One of them, Maren Morris, will be at The Rave this Friday night. My co-host Shannen and I talked to Maren on the phone this morning, and she said she’s still in shock. She played Saturday night and luckily was home last night, but many of her friends and people she knew were still in Vegas.
Me, the band, and crew are all safe. Been a long night, gonna try to get some sleep. Thank you for all your thoughts and prayers. — Luke Combs (@LukeCombsMusic) October 2, 2017
Luke Combs will be at The Rave next week, and he played last night. He tweeted early this morning that he and his crew were all safe. Combs' crew, like many others, were all backstage at the time the shots broke out. Many of them sought shelter in buses and trailers. Country star Chris Young was also backstage and painted the picture in one tweet: "Spent I don’t know how long on the floor of a trailer behind stage … know multiple people are dead. Listening to that gunfire."
I'm not gonna say anything else other than I'm lucky to be alive. As are many others... and so many people are gone... this is heartbreaking — ChrisYoungMusic (@ChrisYoungMusic) October 2, 2017
Country music is never about violence and horror. It’s about fun, love, family and friends. The events that unfolded in Las Vegas – at current writing, there are 58 dead and more than 500 injured – are unthinkable. Thousands of people went to a concert to escape all the crap they’ve had to endure in their lives, just trying to escape it for a short time. Instead they had to endure an actual nightmare.
Many country artists have been echoing their thoughts and prayers alongside other celebrities. You see, this isn’t just a country music thing. This is a friends, neighbors, human beings thing. We are all affected – whether you are a part of the country music community or not.