Garth Brooks Invites Protege To Open Select Dates On World Tour
Fans headed to the Garth Brooks World Tour with Trisha Yearwood in Las Vegas this weekend are in for a treat: rising singer-songwriter Mitch Rossell has been hand-selected by Brooks to open select dates on the record-breaking tour starting tomorrow night.
“Mitch has one of those voices that spins your head around the second you hear it, but that is only the beginning,” Brooks says. “Once he has your attention, get ready for some of the best lyrics and melodies you have ever heard.”
The high praise from Brooks not only scored Rossell an opening slot on the tour, but also helped him become a regular appointment in Brooks’ co-writing calendar. “Writing with Garth is surreal for me because he’s the reason I started writing songs in the first place,” Rossell says.
It’s unusual for an unsigned artist to land such a coveted slot on such a high-profile tour. Rossell recently signed with William Morris Endeavor (with whom Brooks also recently partnered), although the offer was on the table even before those deals were signed. And, in another unusual step, Rossell did not “buy on” to the tour: Brooks simply invited him to come along. (Brooks fans may recall the singer also invited Rossell onstage to celebrate his birthday last fall.)
Rossell, who has released music independently and cultivated a YouTube fanbase, is currently talking to record labels in Nashville although no deal has been signed. His manager told me Rossell will independently release new music on Spotify later this summer.
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It is believed that Brooks, who has a penchant for plotting things designed to break records, will continue his World Tour until it becomes the best-selling tour of all time in terms of total attendance and ticket revenue. Currently in the fifth leg of the tour, the superstar still has a long way to go. U2 current holds the record for both with 7.27 million tickets and $736 million on the 2009-11 360° Tour. U2′s tour shattered AC/DC’s single tour attendance record of 4.8 million and The Rolling Stones’ 2005-07 gross of $558 million.
Brooks’ independent promoter does not report show data to Billboard Boxscore but says Brooks has sold more than 4 million tickets total since the tour began in September 2014. Per Pollstar, last year he grossed $115 million on 1.78 million tickets sold with an average per-city gross of just under $5 million. 2014 and 2015’s combined total of $165.9 million from 171 shows catapulted Brooks to #6 on the Forbes Celebrity 100 (and safely in the top position on its Country Cash Kings list.)