Garth Brooks Cancels Stadiums for Dive Bars Over Vaccine Concerns

Garth Brooks won't be performing in stadiums for the rest of the year and will instead perform all of his shows in dive bars.

The country music superstar is taking extra precautions and canceled five shows from his stadium tour in August as the COVID pandemic continues.

"Stadiums are officially out for this year," the "Friends in High Places" hitmaker told fans this week on the latest installment of his Facebook series Inside Studio G.

The 59-year-old performer, who regularly sells out stadiums, is now set to embark on a dive bar tour. The unusual decision to take his large-scale show to much smaller venues is down to concerns about the coronavirus vaccine.

"The dive bars are vaccinated, that's how you get to do it," Brooks said in his recent Facebook Live. "So, the great thing about this is, [the fans are] vaccinated or they have to show a 3-day negative in-advance test."

Brooks explained that he and his team want attendees to provide proof of vaccination or provide a negative test within 72 hours of the show and they feel that this will be easier to monitor in smaller venues.

"The thing that scares me that you have to look at is, I never saw the second wave coming," Brooks said. "I didn't know there was going to be such a thing. Well, is there a third wave? So, you just watch this."

He continued: "What you want to do is what's best for the people. I want to play music and I want to get out there and laugh... it'd kill me to have to shut it down again."

Brooks told fans that he has provided refunds for a staggering 350,000 tickets for the canceled stadium concerts.

"The joy I have seen in everyone's faces as live music returns has been more than worth our constant diligence to maintain safety protocols not only for the fans, but for our band, the crew and the hard working staff in these stadiums, Brooks said. "Their dedication to safety for the people who fill those seats has been a miracle to watch and a blessing to receive. I am truly grateful."

At present, Brooks said he has found a few replacement venues and dates for the cities he planned to visit on his stadium tour.

The country singer performed at President Joe Biden's inauguration earlier this year in a move that left some of his fans outraged.

Garth Brooks
Garth Brooks performs "Good Ride Cowboy" during the 39th Annual CMA Awards. J. Kempin/Getty/FilmMagic