Country music reigned supreme and staged a full-scale takeover of NYC on the morning of Friday, July 13. While Zac Brown Band performed on the ‘TODAY‘ show in midtown Manhattan, Luke Bryan commandeered the stage in Central Park for the ‘Good Morning America’ summer concert series. He performed a set consisting of ‘Country Girl (Shake It for Me),’ ‘Drunk on You’ and ‘Kiss Tomorrow Goodbye.’ The gregarious singer did not shy away from talking about the National Anthem controversy at the MLB All-Star Game earlier in the week, either. He wrote words on his hands to ensure that he wouldn’t flub his performance like so many musicians before him have. He was subsequently beaten up a bit for doing so.

First things first. ‘GMA’ host Robin Roberts sat down to chat with Bryan onstage and an appearance on a major breakfast TV program could not have been better timed, since Bryan’s anthem gaffe was a hot topic all week. Rather than shrug it off, he was forthright, saying, “That stage, being in that moment, was one of the biggest moments of my life. I’ve done the Anthem many times and I’ve done it at little league baseball parks. Going out there for that moment, it meant so much to me… to have a few notes, to get it right.” He pointed out how people stress out from the pressure of singing the song, saying, “You see it done wrong, and… you almost don’t want to do it.”

It’s clear that Bryan was trying to be overly respectful by writing words on his hand to prevent a mess up.

Bryan also claimed that since he can’t serve in the military, he can show his love for his country by singing the song. He apologized if anyone was offended by the fact that he wrote notes on his hand, which was met with a chorus of cheers from the crowd. That’s when Roberts called him a “true Southern gentleman.” If we didn’t know any better, we might think she was smitten with the always smiling Bryan!

Then again, how could she not be? His cheery disposition is infectious. He even said, “This whole ride for me, every day, I wake up with a big smile. Every day I feel so blessed. That is what is so rewarding about this business, to get up every day and enjoy it and to smile, play music and have the time of your life.”

There’s no mistaking Bryan’s sincerity about the Anthem. All is forgiven.

When performing ‘Country Girl,’ he was flirting with the crowd in his adorable Luke Bryan way.



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