In concert: Keith Urban at Verizon Center


Keith Urban was at his most charming when he broke from the script. (All photos by Josh Sisk/FTWP)

Stopping to take a breath after the first four songs, the Aussie country singer scanned the crowd for the best homemade signs (“I Look Good in Your Shirt,” “Kiss This Girl”) — and the bright orange poster that name-dropped his wife, actress Nicole Kidman, caught his attention. “ ‘Nicole Says It’s Ok For You to Kiss Me’?” said Urban, who boasts an enviable collection of Grammys and No. 1 songs, as he grinned to the thousands packed into the Verizon Center Thursday night.

Urban invited the sign-holder on stage and planted a kiss on her cheek. “This is a friendly town, eh?” he said as posed for a picture with the dazed recipient. “Thanks again for checking with my wife.”

Washington did indeed seem receptive to Urban, who barely stopped again to chat as he happily rocked through 20 songs in two hours. Famous for his dizzying guitar skills, all of Urban’s bouncy, jubilant songs about how awesome it is to be in love (“Put You in a Song,” “Sweet Thing,” “Somebody Like You,” “Kiss a Girl”) seemed to run together. Rarely straying from his well-worn hits, Urban often pointed the microphone in the direction of the audience members to sing lyrics or entire choruses.


Urban also kept the covers to a minimum, only venturing into other artist’s song territory when they were woven through his own. The beginning of Paul McCartney’s “Silly Love Songs” led into the sweet, made-for-a-first-dance “Making Memories of Us” and he tacked on part of Little Big Town’s “Boondocks” at the end of his new, hopeful tune “You Gonna Fly.”


Emily Yahr covers pop culture and entertainment for the Post. Follow her on Twitter @EmilyYahr.

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