Keith Urban brought the entertainment. He even made sure Nashville's top food trucks were on hand so the thousands who skipped work or school to see him on Monday had something for lunch.

The "Wasted Time" singer played a free show outside the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville on Monday (May 9), packing two city blocks with fans from as far away as Alaska. The first turned up at 5PM on Sunday night to ensure a stage-side standing spot. There was no room for sitting among the packed 5th Ave. and Broadway Ave. crowd.

Urban stepped to the stage a few minutes after noon and opened with an a cappella introduction to "Gone Tomorrow (Here Today)," the lead song from his new Ripcord album. Within seconds fans were assured the show would be as loud and guitar-fueled as any on his upcoming Ripcord World Tour. He ripped through solos in "Long Hot Summer" and "Raise 'Em Up" before stopping for a sip of water, then beginning "Sweet Thing."

New songs were interspersed among hits like "Somewhere in My Car," but it's easy to play songs from the new album — something an artist is often loathed to do — when three are already hit singles. "Blue Ain't Your Color" and "Gettin' in the Way" were among the truly new songs. Both were mellow breaks in the action. Within seconds Urban was once again letting his guitar and talented band do the talking. "John Cougar, John Deere, John 3:16" was perhaps his most memorable moment.

"Who skipped school to be here?" Urban asked at one point, just before brining a fan celebrating her birthday onstage to be serenaded. "Your parents are worried. I love you!"

The Nashville show is one of three Urban scheduled to promote the new Ripcord album. Last week he played at Stage 48 in New York City. On Tuesday, he’ll play Los Angeles.

Keith Urban Shares the Secrets of Ripcord