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Kings of Leon Launch Tour Tonight; Talk Challenges & Rewards of Festival Shows

Image courtesy of Image Courtesy Big Hassle (via ABC News Radio)
Image courtesy of Image Courtesy Big Hassle (via ABC News Radio)

Kings of Leon  is launching their summer tour tonight in St. Louis, MO. The road trip will pack almost three dozen shows into a two-month span that will reach both U.S. coasts. 

A summer tour is an ideal time for a band to coast along, recycling older tour ideas for an audience whose primary interest is often having a few beers and relaxing, but Kings of Leon frontman  Caleb Followill  tells ABC News Radio that his band takes its summer trek seriously.

"We're trying to change things from the way they were in the arenas," Caleb says. "Because obviously an outdoor tour is more fun and laid-back and people are out there having a good time, so there are changes that we've made and the set list." Caleb predicts the band's summer shows will "be a lot more light, and [a] good time."

Caleb's brother, bassist  Jared Followill , tells ABC News Radio that having to cull together a set list from the band's six albums is "pretty difficult, actually, it's difficult not to be lazy because we're better at some songs than we are at others [which] makes it easy to choose [those] songs." He says he doesn't stress about it, though: "You just have to find a happy medium...you just grow and learn every single tour."

One of the tour highlights will be Kings of Leon's headlining slot at Lollapalooza this weekend. Jared tells ABC News Radio that playing festivals is fun, "almost like a camp, you know, you get to see a lot of your friends you don't usually get to play with." It's also challenging, because "it's not necessarily your crowd. There's a lot of people who came to see 30 bands and not just you...it also lends you an opportunity to make a show that can be talked about in a much wider scale than if it was just an arena show, so it's exciting to try to make a statement."

You can see a Kings of Leon tour trailer now on the band's  official YouTube channel .

Here are the The Kings of Leon summer tour dates:

7/31 -- St. Louis, MO, Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre
8/1 -- Detroit, MI, DTE Energy Music Theatre
8/3 -- Chicago, IL, Grant Park (Lollapalooza)
8/5 -- Toronto, ON, Molson Canadian Amphitheatre
8/7 -- Hartford, CT, Xfinity Theatre
8/9 -- Mansfield, MA, Xfinity Center
8/10 -- Saratoga Springs, NY, Saratoga Performing Arts Center
8/13 -- Wantagh, NY, Nikon at Jones Beach Theatre
8/15 -- Bristow, VA, Jiffy Lube Live
8/16 -- Bethel, NY, Bethel Woods Center for the Arts
8/19 -- Darien Center, NY, Darien Lake Performing Arts Center
8/20 -- Cuyahoga Falls, OH, Blossom Music Center
8/22 -- Cincinnati, OH, Riverbend Music Center
8/23 -- Indianapolis, IN, Klipsch Music Center
8/26 -- Gilford, NH, Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion at Meadowbrook
8/28 -- Holmdel, NJ, PNC Bank Arts Center
8/29 -- Pittsburgh, PA, First Niagara Pavilion
9/3 -- Virginia Beach, VA, Farm Bureau Live at Virginia Beach
9/5 -- Tampa, FL, Midflorida Credit Union Amphitheatre
9/6 -- West Palm Beach, FL, Cruzan Amphitheatre
9/9 -- Atlanta, GA, Aaron's Amphitheatre at Lakewood
9/10 -- Birmingham, AL, Oak Mountain Amphitheatre
9/12 -- Dallas, TX, Gexa Energy Pavilion
9/13 -- Austin, TX, Austin360 Amphitheatre
9/16 -- Charlotte, NC, PNC Music Pavilion
9/17 -- Raleigh, NC, Walnut Creek Amphitheatre
9/24 -- Denver, CO, Red Rocks Amphitheatre
9/26 -- Albuquerque, NM, Isleta Amphitheatre
9/27 -- Las Vegas, NV, MGM Grand Garden Arena
9/30 -- Sacramento, CA, Sleep Train Amphitheatre
10/1 -- Concord, CA, Concord Pavilion
10/3 -- Los Angeles, CA, Hollywood Bowl

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