Stagecoach: Nelly Steals the Show on Day Two Despite Abrupt Ending

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Although Old Dominion and Kane Brown headlined the main stage at the Stagecoach Festival on Saturday, the night definitely didn’t end there. In fact, hundreds of festival goers left Brown’s set early, making their way to the Palomino tent to watch Nelly close out the night.

The rapper hit the stage with his 40-minute set, performing hit after hit alongside his brother, City Spud. In addition to covering Thomas Rhett’s “Die a Happy Man,” he sang all his greatest hits, including “E.I.,” “Country Grammar,” Ride Wit Me” and “Over and Over,” his 2006 song featuring Tim McGraw — one of the early hip-hop/country crossovers.

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“Late Night in the Palomino,” as its officially billed, also featured guest Breland, who performed his own set on Friday, reuniting with Nelly for their song “High Horse.”

The set ended on a bit of an odd note, with the music suddenly stopping a few bars into “Dilemma.” The confused crowd quickly realized that the clock had struck midnight — no, Nelly wouldn’t turn into a pumpkin, but the festival could receive a hefty fine for going over curfew. So, the song ended just after it began and Nelly disappeared without a goodbye.

INDIO, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 29: (L-R) Geoff Sprung, Matthew Ramsey, and Trevor Rosen of Old Dominion perform onstage during Day 2 of the 2023 Stagecoach Festival on April 29, 2023 in Indio, California. (Photo by Monica Schipper/Getty Images for Stagecoach)
Geoff Sprung, Matthew Ramsey, and Trevor Rosen of Old Dominion perform onstage at the 2023 Stagecoach Festival.

Other highlights of the day included Old Dominion, as singer Matthew Ramsey performed despite a fractured pelvis. While a chair remained at the end of the stage for him to rest for a few moments between songs, Ramsey spent the duration of the set standing and cheering on the very excited crowd. One way to keep an audience going? Cover Harry Styles’ “As It Was.” It worked.

Meanwhile, earlier on Saturday, Mary Chapin Carpenter kicked off her Palomino stage set with her greatest hits, “Passionate Kisses” and “Shut Up and Kiss Me,” to a crowd that knew every word. If anything, her performance was a simple reminder that those Grammys she earned four years in a row were very well-earned.

The “official” headliner of the evening, Brown, started 10 minutes late but made up for it with pyrotechnics, adding some very unnecessary heat into the air. The crowd sang along to “Like I Love Country Music,” “Used to Love You Sober,” “Heaven” and his cover of Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Simple Man.” But they really went crazy for “Thank God,” during which he was joined by his wife, Katelyn Jae.

The night closed out with a fireworks show — something most watched as they were hurrying over to sing along to “Hot in Herre.”

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