3 non-country acts to see at the Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo 2018

Temperatures around the northern areas of the country remain cold and unforgiving. Deep in the heart of Texas however, things are beginning to heat up in anticipation of this year’s Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo. The annual marathon of livestock exhibitions, rodeo events and plenty of live music will return to NRG Park in Houston later this month, and plans on once again welcoming millions of fans during its nearly three-week residency from Feb. 27 through March 18.

The music lineup of the multi-week festival will once again welcome some of the biggest names in commercial country, rock, R&B and Spanish genres. Fittingly, the event has recruited country powerhouse Garth Brooks to not only help open the event on Feb. 27, but will also return a few weeks later to close out this year’s event on its final night. Even the attendees who aren’t exactly into country music should still have a fun time, as they can pick the nights where other genres are being represented on the venue’s brand new, star-shaped stage.

So for inquiring ticket buyers out there looking to have fun at this year’s Livestock Show & Rodeo, but don’t quite care for country music, here are three non-country acts that fans can still come out and see at this year’s event.

1. Leon Bridges - March 2 
The soulful voice of Leon Bridges is not one that should be overlooked. The young singer, who is a local Texan by way of Fort Worth, blew onto the contemporary scene back in 2015 with the release of his debut album, Coming Home. Since then, the emerging vocalist has graced the stages of major music festivals in addition to headlining plenty of venues around the country on his own. He teamed up with fellow Texan Gary Clark Jr. and “Late Show” bandleader Jon Batiste this past September to cover Neil Young‘s “Ohio” for a Spotify Session, and will join another RodeoHouston performer in the Zac Brown Band on the rural rock outfit's upcoming North American tour.

2. Alessia Cara - March 4 
Alessia Cara is one of those once-in-a-generation recording artists and songwriters. The young pop singer from Canada earned the attention of industry scouts as a teenager thanks to the acoustic covers she would post onto YouTube, and before long she had a breakout hit with 2015’s “Here.” Before long she was on the radar of every music publication in the country, and would go on to become a household name after singing “How Far I'll Go” for the hit Disney animated feature, “Moana.” More recently, the 21-year-old took home the Grammy for Best New Artist, following an impressive list of past-winners that includes Sheryl Crow, Lauryn Hill, Alicia Keys and Carrie Underwood, just to name a few.
As she looks forward to moving on from what the music industry would consider her rookie year, Cara’s honest and very likable personality matches with impressive showmanship to make her one of the hottest young talents in pop music today.

3. OneRepublic - March 14 
OneRepublic has been releasing radio-friendly rock tunes for a decade at this point. The band from Colorado Springs will bring the party to NRG Stadium towards the end of the schedule, and will help in providing plenty of pop-friendly energy to the venue with a handful of hits from their four-album catalogue. Fans will remember that they broke onto the scene with the emotionally-heavy hit singles “Stop And Stare” and “Apologize” from their 2007 full-length debut. Over the last 10 years the band has continued to write and record plenty of dance-friendly rock tunes including "All the Right Moves,” “Secrets,” “Good Life” and “Counting Stars.” More recently, the band caught the wave of trop-pop that’s taken over mainstream radio with a collaborative single alongside electronic production trio Seeb, titled “Rich Love.”