Louisiana’s Sugar Bowl Country Kickoff 


Garth Brooks to Headline Country Music Event September 2 at the Caesars Superdome 

NEW ORLEANS (July 12, 2023) – The inaugural Sugar Bowl Country Kickoff presented by the Louisiana Office of Tourism, a music and entertainment event to celebrate the start of the 2023 college football season, will be held Saturday, September 2, at the Caesars Superdome in New Orleans. Garth Brooks will headline this inaugural Sugar Bowl Country Kickoff, with opening acts for the event including Louisiana’s own Lainey Wilson and the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band. The event is expected to be an annual Labor Day weekend affair, adding another world-class musical occasion to the New Orleans calendar. 

Tickets will go on sale on Friday, July 21 at 10 a.m. via Ticketmaster.com/GarthBrooks. Tickets will be $98.95 all inclusive. 

Festivities for the Sugar Bowl Country Kickoff on Sept. 2nd will begin at Champions Square with Tailgate Town, a football-themed interactive experience sponsored by New Orleans & Company. That portion of the event will feature up-and-coming music talent and will set the stage for the main entertainment in the Superdome. Tailgate Town will also feature special college football and amateur sports spotlights, sponsor activations, and other games and activities throughout the day before the fans move inside the Superdome for the performances by headliner Garth Brooks and openers Lainey Wilson and Nitty Gritty Dirt Band. Wilson, a native of Baskin, La., was the CMA 2022 Female Vocalist of the Year; and the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band is a Grammy-Award winning band that has delighted audiences for nearly 60 years. 

“Being asked to be part of the first ever Sugar Bowl Country Kickoff is an honor,” Brooks said. “The fun will be in getting to perform with Legends Nitty Gritty and future legend Miss Wilson in front of arguably the greatest country music fans on the planet. Any trip to Louisiana is a guaranteed good time so PLEASE count me in!!” 

“The Sugar Bowl Committee is always looking at ways to bring first-rate entertainment that will drive tourism in Louisiana,” said Sugar Bowl President Richard Briede. “While efforts have traditionally focused on sporting events, Russell Doussan and the Doussan Music Group have provided us the opportunity to add great music, another hallmark of the state, to the Sugar Bowl repertoire as we start a new football season. The Sugar Bowl is particularly pleased that proceeds from the event will help support the work our organization is doing in the community.” 

Proceeds from the event will go toward assisting the Allstate Sugar Bowl in its support of numerous community programs, including the organization’s much-publicized backing of the New Orleans Teacher Collective. Funds will also go toward the aid of existing scholarship programs and youth events the Bowl supports annually. 


“As the College Football Playoff looks to expand a year from now, we find ourselves in an increasingly competitive environment,” said Bowl CEO Jeff Hundley. “This has caused us to look at everything with a fresh set of eyes and to look at creative ways to drive revenue in order to remain competitive with larger cities in possession of much larger corporate bases. The Sugar Bowl Country Kickoff provides us with just such an opportunity while allowing us to continue to do good things for our city and state.” 

“We are excited to have not just Garth Brooks in the Superdome, but also our very own Louisiana Music Ambassador and Louisiana native Lainey Wilson,” said Lieutenant Governor Billy Nungesser. “She rocked the world with us on our float in the Rose Parade and we know she will get the crowd rocking to welcome Garth to the stage in New Orleans. This lineup has all the makings of a great Louisiana Saturday night.” 

“Creating an Annual Music Event to celebrate the opening of the College Football season in my hometown, with the Sugar Bowl and then launching it with Garth Brooks is truly a dream come true,” said Russell Doussan, the owner and president of Doussan Music Group.” 

For the latest updates on the Sugar Bowl Country Kickoff, follow @CountryKickoff on Twitter and Instagram, “like” Sugar Bowl Country Kickoff on Facebook, or visit SugarBowlCountryKickoff.com. 

www.SugarBowlCountryKickoff.com – 

For more information about the Sugar Bowl Country Kickoff please contact: 

John Sudsbury – 504-427-7076 – johns@sugarbowl.org 

Erica Rieke – erica@dmgpresents.com 

About the Sugar Bowl: 

The Allstate Sugar Bowl has established itself as one of the premier college football bowl games, having hosted 28 national champions, 102 Hall of Fame players, 52 Hall of Fame coaches and 21 Heisman Trophy winners in its 89-year history. The 90th Allstate Sugar Bowl Football Classic, which will double as a College Football Playoff Semifinal, is scheduled to be played on January 1, 2024. In addition to football, the Sugar Bowl Committee annually invests over $1 million into the community through the hosting and sponsorship of sporting events, awards, scholarships and clinics. Through these efforts, the organization supports and honors thousands of student-athletes each year, while injecting nearly $2.4 billion into the local economy in the last decade. For more information, visit www.AllstateSugarBowl.org

About Garth Brooks: Garth Brooks has returned to radio with the launch of The BIG 615, exclusively on his SEVENS Radio Network on TuneIn Radio. He also has just begun a new residency, Garth Brooks/Plus ONE at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace. With 2023 sold out, 2024 dates are already on sale. Last year, Garth Brooks completed the three and a half year long Stadium Tour. It drew an average of more than 95 thousand people in each city it played and was seen by a cumulative audience of nearly three-million people. The tour ended in September when Garth played the fifth sold-out concert at Dublin, Ireland’s Croke Park. The five concerts were seen by over 400-thousand people. In May 2021, Garth Brooks was one of five artists to receive one of the most prestigious honors an artist can receive, The Kennedy Center Honor. Garth is the first-ever seven-time recipient of the CMA Entertainer of the Year honor. Brooks is the first and only artist in history to receive nine Diamond Awards for the now nine diamond-certified albums at over 10 million album sales each. He remains the #1-selling solo artist in U.S. history, certified by the RIAA with 157 million album sales. He was awarded Country Touring Artist of the Decade at the 2021 Pollstar Awards. In March 2020, Garth received the esteemed Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song. The event aired on PBS. He has received every accolade the recording industry can bestow on an artist. 


About Lainey Wilson: 

CMA 2022 Female Vocalist of the Year, CMA 2022 New Artist of the Year, and ACM’s 2022 New Female Artist of the Year, Lainey Wilson has earned the enthusiasm of the industry. Having been named to nearly every “Artist to Watch” list, being crowned the most nominated female artist at the 2023 ACM awards, as well as the top nominated artist at the 2023 CMT Music Awards, the Louisiana native is one of Nashville’s hottest and most buzzed-about new artists. Landing her first No. 1 with her PLATINUM Certified ACM Song of the Year, “Things A Man Oughta Know,” nearly 10 years to the day after leaving her small farming community in a camper trailer to chase her dreams, she has won over legions of fans with her signature Bell Bottom Country sound and aesthetic, which blends traditional Country with a modern yet retro flare. A prolific and sought-after songwriter (having co-writer credits on songs by artists including Luke Combs, Flatland Calvary, and more), Lainey is a fresh, fierce voice in Nashville, delivering CMA-nominated album of the year with her label debut, Sayin’ What I’m Thinkin’. With a rockstar stage presence, her artistry has taken her across the globe, performing for sold-out crowds throughout the US, UK, and Germany with notable names like Jon Pardi, Luke Combs, Morgan Wallen, HARDY, Jason Aldean, Ashley McBryde, and more. After topping the country radio charts for a second time with the two-week No. 1 hit, “Never Say Never” with Cole Swindell, she recently achieved her third and fourth No. 1 song with “Heart Like a Truck” and HARDY collaboration “wait in the truck”. Her critically acclaimed album, “Bell Bottom Country,” reached No. 9 on Billboard’s Country Albums Chart, quickly rose to No. 1 on iTunes charts and has amassed over 350 million streams to date. Most recently, she made her acting debut in Season 5 of the smash hit series “Yellowstone” as a musician character named Abby, where she premiered her original “Smell Like Smoke” as well as showcased other hits off her recent album including “Watermelon Moonshine” and “Hold My Halo”. Adding to her growing list of endeavors, Wilson was named “Tractor Supply Brand Ambassador,” and was honored at Billboard’s Women in Music Awards with the Rulebreaker Award. For more information and upcoming tour dates, visit www.laineywilson.com or follow on Instagram @laineywilsonmusic / Twitter @laineywilson / Facebook.com/laineywilsonmusic

About Nitty Gritty Dirt Band: 

Many veteran bands trade on nostalgia, on replication of past glories, and on recycled emotions from younger, more carefree days. The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band trades on a mix of reimagined classics and compelling newer works. The group formed in 1966 as a Long Beach, California jug band, scored its first charting single in 1967, and embarked on a self-propelled ride through folk, country, rock ‘n’ roll, pop, blue-grass, and the amalgam now known as “Americana.” The first major hit came in 1971 with the epic “Mr. Bojangles,” which, along with insistent support from banjo master Earl Scruggs, opened doors in Nashville. In the 1980s, the Dirt Band reeled off 15 straight Top 10 country hits, including chart-toppers “Long Hard Road (The Sharecropper’s Dream),” “Modern Day Romance,” and “Fishin’ in the Dark (co-written by Jim Photoglo, who would join the band in the second decade of the new century). Throughout the group’s lifetime, personnel has changed, with each change resulting in positive steps forward, new ways of playing the old songs, and renewed enthusiasm for writing and recording fresh material. The latest Dirt Band lineup is expanded to six members for the first time since 1968. Today’s group consists of founding member Jeff Hanna, harp master Jimmie Fadden (who joined in 1966), and soulful-voiced Bob Carpenter, who has more than 40 years of service in the ensemble. Those veterans are now joined by singer-songwriter-bass man Jim Photoglo, fiddle and mandolin wizard Ross Holmes, and Hanna’s son, the preternaturally talented singer and guitarist Jaime Hanna. Blood harmony, thrilling instrumental flights, undeniable stage chemistry … these things are part of each Dirt Band show. A Dirt Band show is unlike any other. For legions of fans, it’s less about the memories than the moment, crisp as an Autumn apple and rich as a royal flush. 

About Doussan Music Group (DMG): 

Doussan Music Group or DMG was founded in early 2021 by Russell Doussan, in the wake of the music industry coming back online. When asked what his driving motivation was to open his own promoter group Doussan stated, “Introducing each artist to their fans through the LIVE music experience is a passion of mine. As the artist hits the stage, feeling the energy in the room and hearing the venue come alive, is what drives me. Music is the soundtrack of our lives!” DMG is set up to promote and produce U.S. Tours with a primary focus on indoor venues as well as curated event. The company’s staff of “rock stars” includes seasoned music industry veterans in booking, marketing, ticketing, production, accounting, and VIP sales. 

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