The tour which kicked off in early January in Fort Myers, Fla continues through the summer
USA - After dominating the country music charts with 35 number ones, more than 60 career singles and a dedicated fan base, Alan Jackson has chosen Nashville-based Elite Multimedia Productions (EMP) to handle all lighting, video and LED for his 25th anniversary, Keepin' It Country tour, which is sponsored by Kubota Tractor Corporation.

The tour, which kicked off in early January in Fort Myers, Fla. and continues through the summer, has production needs that vary with the many different types of venues it plays. Lighting and video play a major role in the country icon's production so that audiences feel the camaraderie that is driven home through Jackson's songs.

Account manager Peter Streiff assisted in compiling lighting gear from Vari*Lite, Martin, Clay Paky and PixelFLEX LED video curtains that are all serviced through EMP, and help to creatively deliver those goals put in place by Nathan Baugh, tour and production manager, and Craig Rutherford, lighting designer.

"Alan is a unique artist in the sense that he wants his music videos played with every song," Baugh said. "We had to find a way of presenting that without appearing like we were doing the same thing over and over."

2015 marks Rutherford's second tour with Alan Jackson, and has worked to freshen and breathe new life into the lighting with fellow designer Justin Kitchenman of Fadeup Design. Through bold colours and beamy looks, Rutherford gets the most out of the gear, including Vari*Lite's VL3000's and a MA Lighting GrandMA lighting console.

Because of the packaging of both LED and lighting, production for Jackson's 2015 was able to implement more efficient strategies.

"PixelFLEX was my main reason for coming over in terms of truck space," Baugh said. "This product has revolutionized our touring in terms of load out times and truck space."

"The most surprising part about working with Elite has been the amount of support I've gotten from Peter and Jason, the head of lighting," Rutherford said. "They're available anytime something comes up or if I have any kind of problem on the road, and they worked incredibly hard during prep and building to make sure I had everything I needed."

"Adding Alan Jackson to our Elite family is a special moment for us as a production company," Streiff said. "It felt right working with Alan and his entire production team, and as a Nashville-based company, it's a proud moment to be able to continue working with a country icon like Alan Jackson."

(Jim Evans)

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