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"My favorite part about this tour is there's an eclectic approach to it," Gary tells The Boot. "It's an unique experience, because you get to see the main stages but while you're in between you can go see an acoustic show off to the side someplace. That's a magic environment to be in, especially if you're a music person."
The Throwdown also provides the perfect opportunity for rubbing elbows with his tourmates. "I'm looking forward to getting to know all of them, because I don't know much about any of them," Gary admits. "It'll be fun to get out there and do that during this tour."
The lone female on the trek, Sunny Sweeney, has already told The Boot that she's ready for any pranks the boys plans to play her on. "I got stuff stored up," Sunny revealed. "I hope none of them think they're going to pull any fast ones on me. They don't want to, because I've got stuff planned."
However, unless she strikes first, she doesn't worry about the headliner. "I've never ever been a big prank guy so, no, I don't see myself initiating any pranking on this tour," he says. "I'm a good retaliator, but I really don't like pranks."
Not that he won't be up for a good time during the eight-week run, which makes stops from New York to Kansas and tons of points in between.
"I'd definitely like for this experience to not be uptight for everyone," he explains. "I've been on some super-uptight tours, and I've been on some tours that were super laid-back -- where everybody's having a good time -- and that's us. My crew is super laid-back and accommodating, and we try to bring everybody together and just have fun!"
The 20-city tour is being sponsored in part by Kingsford Charcoal, and will also include Corey Smith, Eric Paslay and several other artists. The final stop of the tour will be July 8 at Nashville's Woods at Fontanel, and will include special guests Jonathan Singleton and the Grove, Drake White and Mama's Blue Dress.
Fans at each show will have a chance to win a customized snare drum courtesy of SJC Custom Drums by taking photos of the performing artists and posting them on Twitter. Participants must mention the Country Throwdown Tour Fired Up by Kingsford's handle @thrwdowntour and hashtag #CountryThrowdownSJContest to be qualified to enter. More details may be found here.
Watch the Music Video for Gary's "Today"