“I didn’t dream, no, I did not dream this. It’s true,” Chesney, 47, told “Good Morning America” co-anchor Robin Roberts while giving her a behind-the-scenes sneak peek of just one of the 23 stadiums he’s playing in his 55-date “Big Revival Tour.”
“To stand in the middle of it and to feel it is just really, really amazing,” he said of being on his stage. “I bet I spend 85 percent of my time of the night right here going back and forth on this. I could close my eyes. I’ve had this same dimension of my stage for a while. You could blindfold me and put me up here and I could go back and forth and run all night and not fall off.”
It’s a tour that has been a year in the making after Chesney took 2014 off to hit the reset button, going back into the studio to focus solely on his new album.
“It was the best thing that ever to me as a creative person, as a songwriter, as a son, as a friend and as a human being,” he explained. “That time away was spent still being creative, but it fed me out here. It fed everything.”
The platinum-selling artist says despite all his successes, he’s still a “pretty simple” man.
“I really am,” Chesney said. “I had a girlfriend tell me one time that I was so simple I was complicated.”
“I think it’s only human nature to see your idea of success and the idea of a star, and then you try to emulate them,” Chesney said. “And I knew where I wanted to go, but I didn’t think I could do it trying to be someone else. And that’s when my life changed and I really tried to get better, and tried to get better as a songwriter and as an entertainer.”
He remembers making a list to help him tackle what he wanted to improve upon in his life and career.
“I remember the night that I did this,” he recalled. “I was in bed and I got up, and I had what you call an epiphany, of all these things that you could do to make yourself better. And I wrote them down, and there were 35 things that I wrote down.”
The list included items about “just trying to be a better creator, trying to be a better musician, and just, it was about being better,” Chesney said. “It was about getting up every day and being better. That was when I became so pinpoint-focused that it was hard to get me out of that zone and it was just, ‘boom.’ Every day, and I’m still that way.”
And that Chesney focus continues to break records. He has sold more than 1 million concert tickets every year for 12 consecutive tours, including this one, and will have played an unprecedented 113 career stadium shows when he wraps “The Big Revival” tour next month.
“I’ve always just made the music that came naturally,” he said. “But I do think it’s important to push your audience but not alienate them. And I think that’s the one thing that I’m the most proud of ‘The Big Revival’ is, because I took a year off to push them and bring them along with me to the next chapter of my life. And they came, and it’s great.”