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Mega Winterfest Is New Breed of Country Music Festival

Jason Aldean Winter seems to be the off season for Country Music festivals. But last Friday night (Jan. 16), Jason Aldean, headliner of the Mega Winterfest in St. Charles, Ill., near Chicago, waited through five house of Country Music, until his turn at the microphone. After midnight, Aldean made his break for the stage and continued past 1 a.m.During his show, he performed almost all of his hits, beginning with “I Use What I Got.”  After his opening number, Aldean said, “I know it’s past some of your bedtimes, and I thank you for stickin’ around.” Aldean also performed, “Amarillo Sky,” “Relentless,” “She’s Country” and “Hicktown.”Winterfest is a new breed of Country Music festivals because it takes place in the middle of winter inside a warehouse facility near Chicago. In addition to Aldean’s performance, Kellie Pickler, Joe Nichols and Julianne Hough also took to the stage. The purpose of Winterfest is not to replace the summer festivals, but to give fans something to look forward to during the off-season.Pickler took to the stage before Aldean’s set, and CMT reports that she “charmed everyone with her stories and songs and unzipped pants.” During her set, a fan yelled that her jeans were unzipped. Pickler responded, “You gonna put that picture on eBay? I’m glad I wore panties tonight.” She closed her set with “I Wonder,” which received the only standing ovation of the night. Nichols preceded Pickler’s performance, and turned out to be one of the night’s highlights. He stuck with his seven years of hits and related well with the audience. He performed songs like “Tequila Makes Her Clothes Fall Off,” “Brokenheartsville,” “She Only Smokes When She Drinks” and “I’ll Wait for You.” Hough performed before Nichols and got the crowd going. Despite some sound difficulties early in her performance, Hough made it through songs like her newest single, “Hide Your Matches,” “That Song in My Head” and “My Hallelujah Song.” The new Country starlet is currently the opening act for George Strait.The show opened with The Road Hammers, One Flew South and The Lost Trailers. The Lost Trailers performed “How ‘Bout You Don’t” and “Holler Back.”  As for the Road Hammers and One Flew South, they also opened the next night (Saturday, Jan. 17) for LeAnn Rimes, Phil Vassar, Darryl Worley, Trent Tomlinson and Jimmy Wayne.