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Miranda Lambert’s Emotional Return to the Stage Comes at WE Fest 2015

Sadness, anger, joy, gratitude … fans could see and hear all of these emotions during Miranda Lambert‘s set at WE Fest 2015 on Friday night (Aug. 7). The recently-divorced country superstar alluded to her split in direct and indirect ways, but that drama quickly took a backseat to what was going on between the amps.

Lambert admitted to being nervous before starting the show. WE Fest in Detroit Lakes, Minn. brings one of the larger crowds she’ll play all year, and this marked her first return to the big stage since she and husband Blake Shelton split (she played an intimate club show last week). The superstar seemed to really begin to loosen up during “Kerosene.” Fans didn’t miss it when she called the last verse her favorite part of the song:

“Now I don’t hate the one who left / You can’t hate someone who’s dead / He’s out there holding on to someone, I’m holding up my smoking gun,” the blonde Texan sang. Sure, there were two songs prior to this, but it’s here the show really began.

The emotions spilled over during “Over You.” Lambert’s lip quivered slightly and tears came to her eyes as she sang the final lines of the song, written in memory of Shelton’s late brother. Anyone sitting rose to his or her feet as she ended the song. The adulation seemed to be pure therapy.

“All Kinds of Kinds,” a cover of Mountain’s “Mississippi Queen” and “Priscilla” were among those that immediately followed. Gwen Sebastian came center stage to help Lambert sing her current single, “Smokin’ and Drinkin’.” Then, the night’s big surprise stepped forward.

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Lambert and Dierks Bentley are old friends, so when she asked him to come back to the stage following his own rowdy 75 minute set, he obliged. First the two took the opportunity to pump up a somewhat listless crowd. Bentley urged them on, saying chances to see the premier female vocalist of our generation are fleeting. Lambert joked that she hasn’t been drinking all day and she had more energy.

“I wish I would have been,” she added. “I deserve it, I got divorced!”

The pair sang an unrehearsed but still charming cover of Tracy Lawrence‘s “Texas Tornado.” Then Lambert stood alone in the spotlight for “The House That Build Me.”

While she saved the big hits for last, her set concluded with no encore. This may have been the night’s only disappointment, but it’s difficult to determine what she could have played at that point. Lambert closed Day 2 of WE Fest, with sets by Bentley, Tyler Farr, Eric Paslay and the Randy Rogers Band coming before her.

Day 3, the final day of the biggest country music festival, will feature sets by Jake Owen, Eli Young Band and Colt Ford, in addition to headliner Blake Shelton.

The first headliner for WE Fest 2016, Eric Church, has already been announced, with a long list of great acts to be named in the coming months. Tickets are on sale now right here.

First 2016 WE Fest Headliner Announced!

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Hair She Is: Miranda’s Best ‘Dos Through the Years

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