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"You Should Be Here": As Cole Swindell celebrated a #1 and played an outdoor show, he was thinking of Vegas

ABC/Image Group LA
ABC/Image Group LA

Tuesday in Nashville, it was a time for both celebration and contemplation, as Cole Swindell marked his seventh #1 in a row, “Flatliner,” with a party at Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge.

Later in the evening, Cole was to headline the concert marking the legendary honky tonk’s 57th anniversary. He admitted the open-air stage, in the middle of Nashville’s famed Lower Broadway, was reminding him of the tragedy in Vegas.

“I just know that this is what we do,” he said thoughtfully. “You know, we write songs, we sing ’em… You know country music, this is our city, and we’ve all had Vegas on our minds.”

Fifty-eight innocent people lost their lives and nearly 500 more were injured in the shooting that began during Jason Aldean’s set at the Route 91 Harvest Festival.

Cole echoed the country music community’s resounding call to press on, saying he hopes the tragedy doesn’t compromise fans’ willingness to attend outdoor events.

“To be able to come out here tonight in Nashville, Preds’ first home game, Tootsie’s birthday, I just hope everybody comes out,” Cole added. “But that is something I’ve thought about, and you know, I’m gonna keep showing up, playing music, as long as they keep showing up.”

In light of the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history, Cole pointed out his emotional #1, “You Should Be Here,” has taken on new meaning.

“To have that song that I wrote about losing my dad, knowing that, you know now, all these people are feeling those same feelings…” Cole mused, “That’s all I ever wanted to do was write one song that could touch somebody, help ’em through a tough time, like country music’s always done for me. I think that’s why that song’s so special to me — always will be.”

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