Blake Shelton pop-up show Instagram/@lauraleigh_4790

In his song “I Lived It” off his album “Texoma Shore,” country superstar Blake Shelton gets nostalgic, singing of days gone by when he was just a kid growing up in Oklahoma. And on the night of Feb. 8, it was this song that got his love Gwen Stefani singing right along.

“That’s just the kind of life that made me who I am,” Blake sang as he took the stage at a surprise, pop-up concert in Fort Smith, Arkansas, that he had announced on his Twitter page just a few hours before. Standing to the side of the stage shooting video of the performance, Gwen couldn’t help but burst into song herself briefly as held the camera.

Earlier in the day, Blake’s social media team wrote on his Twitter page, “Hey y’all. How does a show in Fort Smith, Arkansas sound? How about tonight? Because it is happening. See you at the Sound Room tonight at 8 p.m. It’s a free show with limited space, so first come first [served].”

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Of course, hundreds of lucky fans lined up to get an opportunity to see a once-in-a-lifetime performance from Blake at small club. They also got a glimpse at Gwen, who joined Blake on his tour bus and stood just offstage during his show. Indeed, the two have been spending a bunch of time together as of late, as they have been seen together both at the Super Bowl and at Luke Bryan’s “Crash My Playa” festival in Mexico so far in 2018.

And while it turned out to be a great night, it did have its scary moments. Just a couple of hours before Blake took the stage, a homeless man was arrested just outside the venue for threatening a slew of Blake’s fans with a car antenna.

And yes, we said car antenna.

According to local media reports, the man — who also had three knives on him — now faces a misdemeanor disorderly conduct charge. Thankfully, no one was injured.

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Now, Blake will head to that Oklahoma home that he sang about, playing two intimate shows on February 9 and 10 at his Ole Red Tishomingo bar. The shows, proceeds from which will go straight to charity, is a nice warm-up for Blake, as he will soon embark on his “Country Music Freaks Tour” with openers Carly Pearce, Brett Eldredge and Blake’s good buddy, Trace Adkins.

“[Blake] just called me one day and asked me what I was doing early first quarter next year, and I said that I didn’t have a plan,” Trace told Rare Country during a 2017 interview before a show in Chicago. “He asked if I could come out for a few shows, and I said, ‘Well, OK,’ and that’s the extent of our business conversations. [Blake and I] are just cut from the same cloth. We both are from small towns and rural areas and would love to be in a hunting lodge rather than a four-star hotel. We just have always hit it off. It’s always been that way.”


The 14-date “Country Music Freaks Tour,” kicks off Feb. 15 in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and runs through March 17 in Philadelphia.

Tricia Despres is a senior correspondent for Rare Country, based out of Chicago. Join the conversation on Twitter at @RareCountry. We would love to see y’all there.
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