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Tampa Bay area music fans ready for the return of big concerts

Posted at 4:45 PM, May 20, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-20 18:02:37-04

TAMPA, Fla. — Classic rock icon Foreigner hasn't played in front of fans since March of last year.

No 'Juke Box Hero.' No 'Cold as Ice.'

And lead singer Kelly Hansen can't wait to get on stage.

"People seem like they are very excited to get back out in the world and especially go see live performances. We are super thrilled to go out and starting playing in front of real live people again," said Hansen.

Foreigner is rehearsing in Tampa before they play at Ruth Eckerd Hall this weekend.

"We are here just making sure we got all the cobwebs out, remembering what we are doing. Getting my voice warmed up," said Hansen.

More and more major artists are announcing tour dates as COVID-19 numbers fall and restrictions are lifted.

The MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheater has a handful of concerts scheduled for the coming months.

"The Dead and Company go on sale this week, Jason Aldean goes on this week."

Brandon Pittman runs Choice Tickets of Tampa Bay.

He says business is picking up as more big shows are announced.

"There's a lot of pent-up demand. People have sat home for a year plus. People are just ready to get on with their lives. Ready to get out and enjoy the things they did pre-pandemic," said Pittman.

Masks, as of now, are still required for shows at the Amphitheater, Amalie Arena, and Ruth Eckerd Hall — and capacity is limited.

But guidelines are constantly changing as the CDC comes out with new recommendations.

"We are all vaccinated, but we do have to be smart about it. And the venues that we are working are taking really great precautions, and I especially feel that I have to really watch myself because if I get sick, everybody goes home and that's not something I want to be responsible for," said Hansen.

By the Fall, we should see full houses again and more of your favorite artists making plans to come to the Tampa Bay area.