GOSHEN — Country hall-of-famer Vince Gill, rising country newcomers Florida Georgia Line and Christian artist Jason Crabb will perform at the 2013 Elkhart County 4-H Fair.
Though the fair is seven months away, the fair board announced half the line-up for the next fair’s concert series Wednesday.
“We are just excited to have them come in to the Elkhart fair,” said the fair’s President Elect, Tim Yoder. “Vince Gill came out of nowhere when we were looking and talking.”
Yoder said Gill had heard about the fair’s reputation and wanted to make the stop.
“And then of course, Florida Georgia, you just get lucky,” he said.
Crabb will perform Sunday, July 21 at 8 p.m.. Florida Georgia Line will take the grandstand stage the following evening, with a second act planned for that evening but not ready to be announced.
Gill will perform Tuesday, July 23.
In addition to the second unannounced performance for July 22, that leaves the performers for Saturday, July 20, and Wednesday, July 24, yet to be announced.
The Saturday concert is often a classic rock group, while Wednesday’s concert is typically put on by a country artist or group.
The fair will run July 19 through July 27. As in the past, next summer’s concerts will offer grandstand seating that’s free, while people will have the opportunity to buy reserved track seats. Tickets for track seats will go on sale May 18, and prices will be announced once the entire concert series is confirmed.
A 20-time Grammy winner as a singer, songwriter and producer and a three-time Dove Award winner, Gill is a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame. He’s sung with people like Ricky Skaggs and Rosanne Cash, Dolly Parton, Patty Loveless, Barbara Streisand, John Anderson, Sheryl Crow, Phil Everly, Bonnie Raitt, Emmylou Harris and his wife, Amy Grant. He spent a dozen years as host of the Country Music Association Awards and has won 18 CMAs.
FLORIDA GEORGIA LINE
The duo of Tyler Hubbard and Brian Kelley played this year with artists like Jake Owen, Brantley Gilbert, Rodney Atkins, Justin Moore, Garry Allan and Colt Ford. They just released their first studio album last week, and their single “Cruise” is the number-two country song on the radio right now, according to Billboard.com, and reached number one on the country digital songs chart.
The pair met as students at Belmont University in Nashville and took their name from their homes, with Hubbard hailing from Georgia and Kelley coming from Florida.
Crabb, who’s won a Grammy and is a 10-time Dove Award winner (plus another 10 as part of the Crabb Family), hit the road at age 14 with his family. He’s performed at the Grand Ole Opry and Carnegie Hall. He was mentored by Bill Gaither, and sang for the Rev. Billy Graham’s farewell crusade. Right now he’s doing a Christmas Tour with Sandi Patty.
Crabb started a solo career in 2007 when the family decided to stop touring, and his initial album features appearances by Gill, The Gaither Vocal Band and Sonya Isaacs.
The concerts are always a big draw for the fair, one of the largest fairs in the nations, usually drawing about a quarter-million visitors during its nine-day run.