"Sometimes it doesn't work" — Eric Church addresses 2024 Stagecoach set backlash

Eric Church (image via official Instagram @ericchurchmusic)
Eric Church (Image via Instagram/@ericchurchmusic)

Eric Church performed at the Stagecoach festival in Indio, California on April 26, 2024. He took the stage with a choir and performed a gospel-themed acoustic set featuring covers of songs such as Hallelujah, Take Me to the River, I’ll Fly Away, and more. This performance, which took place alongside a stained-glass backdrop and a 16-person choir, generated backlash from some portions of the audience on social media.

Eric Church then addressed the backlash in a statement, as per USA Today, and elaborated on the reasons behind his unconventional set.

"For me, it’s always been something with records, with performances, I’ve always been the one that’s like, 'let’s do something really, really strange and weird and take a chance'," he said.

The singer continued:

"Sometimes it doesn't work, but it's OK if you're living on that edge, because that edge, that cutting edge, is where all the new guys are going to gravitate to anyway. So if you can always challenge yourself that way, it always cuts sharper than any other edge."

More on Eric Church's Stagecoach set and the backlash against it

Eric Church's headlining set at the Stagecoach festival mainly comprised covers of gospel-themed songs and some of his own hits. The full setlist for Eric Church's Stagecoach festival performance is given below, as per Setlist.fm:


  1. Hallelujah by Leonard Cohen
  2. Stand By Me by Ben E King
  3. Walking in Memphis by Marc Cohn
  4. California Love by Tupac Shakur
  5. Swing Low Sweet Chariot (Traditional African-American spiritual song)
  6. When The Saints Go Marching In (traditional African-American spiritual song)
  7. I'll Fly Away (originally written by Albert E.Brumley in 1926)
  8. I Saw The Light by Hank Williams
  9. People Get Ready by The Impressions
  10. Take Me to the River by Al Green
  11. Your Love Keeps Lifting Me Higher and Higher by Jackie Wilson
  12. Oh Happy Day by Edward Hawkins Singers
  13. Danny's Song by Loggins and Messina
  14. I Am... I Said by Neil Diamond
  15. Chevy Van by Sam Johns
  16. Gin and Juice by Snoop Dogg
  17. California Love by 2Pac
  18. Dig Gravedigger Dig by Corb Lund
  19. Home by Marc Broussard
  20. Amazing Grace by John Newton
  21. Fire by The Pointer Sisters
  22. This Little Light of Mine

Eric Church songs:

  1. Mistress Named Music
  2. Smoke a Little Smoke
  3. Desperate Man
  4. The Outsiders
  5. Sinners Like Me
  6. Creepin'
  7. Like Jesus Does
  8. Country Music Jesus
  9. Springsteen

The backlash against this set by Eric Church came from attendees, many of whom found the music disappointing.

Eric Church addressed the backlash in a statement and as per USA Today, he mentioned this was the "most difficult set" he had ever attempted.

"This was the most difficult set I have ever attempted. I've always found that taking it back to where it started, back to chasing who Bob Seger loves, who Springsteen loves, who Willie Nelson loves, you chase it back to the origin. The origin of all that is still the purest form of it. And we don't do that as much anymore. It felt good at this moment to go back, take a choir and do that," he said.

Aside from his appearance at the Stagecoach festival, Eric Church also has a number of other shows and festival performances scheduled. In May, the singer will perform several shows at the Chief's On Broadway in Nashville, Tennessee.

These shows will be followed by performances at the Tailgate N' Tallboys 2024 in June 2024, where the singer will appear alongside artists such as Elle King and Lanie Gardner, among others.

In October, Church will perform at the Country Calling Festival in Ocean City, Maryland. The festival will also feature performances by artists such as Jelly Roll, Riley Green, Ella Langley, and more.

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