Keith Urban brought a bit of country to the FEQ

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Photo: Jay Ouellet

Handsome and talented Keith Urban charmed the lights off many at the July 10 show of the Festival d’Été. 
His catchy rhythms make you want to jump onto the country music bandwagon. 

Country music finally came to the Festival d’Été de Québec (FEQ) when Australian heart-throb Keith Urban took the festival stage on July 10. Thousands of fans moseyed onto the Plains of Abraham, many wearing cowboy boots and cowboy hats for the occasion. 
 In opening his first show in Quebec City, the singer, songwriter and guitarist kicked off with, “Bonsoir, Québec! Je m’appelle Keith Urban. Comment tu vas?” 
 Those magical words and Urban’s opening song, “Long Hot Summer” caught the crowd’s attention immediately. The singer charmed the crowd throughout the show. He invited onto the stage an astonished fan, Audrée-Anne, who held up her sparkling sign. His generosity did not end there: he went into the crowd to sing and gave his guitar, which he autographed then and there, to a deliriously happy fan. 
Prior to the show in Quebec City, Urban held a singing contest. The prize was the chance to join Urban onstage during the show. Local country singer Allison Fortier, 20, captured the honours and joined Urban in a rendition of his hit “We Were Us.” Fortier’s talent was outshone only by her excitement at being there. “She was amazing,” said Urban.  
Many of Urban’s songs, such as “Cop Car” and “Somebody Like You,” got the crowd singing. As he sang his latest hit, “John Cougar, John Deere, John 3:16,” people danced and sang along.  
Later in the show, Urban went backstage and returned a moment later wearing a Joe Sakic Nordiques T-shirt, which brought an enthusiastic response from the crowd and stepped up the pace of the show. A video of the crowd jumping up and down to the music can be seen on YouTube at www.youtube.com/user/keithurban. The Festival d’Été and a number of fans have uploaded videos of Urban’s show onto YouTube and Facebook.
Urban, like the thousands of FEQ pass-holders, did not want to leave. “If they tell us to leave, [we won’t]! It took us so long to get here, we don’t want to leave.” The crowd cheered. He left his fans a message on the interactive website Twitter: “Quebec!!! AMAZING tonight! Merci, merci beaucoup! We had the best time playing up here at the Festival! I never played up here before. I hope we get to come back soon.”
 In 2011, Urban was a vocal coach on the Australian version of the television singing competition, The Voice. From 2012 to 2014, he replaced Steven Tyler as a judge on the television series American Idol. He has been married to Nicole Kidman since 2006, and they have two children.