Phil Vassar

Phil Vassar will perform at the Central Washington State Fair on Friday, taking the place of Josh Turner, whose tour crew was involved in a bus crash.

Country singer-songwriter Phil Vassar will play the Central Washington State Fair on Friday, replacing country singer Josh Turner after Turner’s road crew was involved in a tour bus crash.

“We’re sorry to lose Josh Turner as we know there were plenty of their fans planning to come to the show,” Fair General Manager and President Greg Stewart said in a Thursday afternoon news release. “We’re very happy that Phil Vassar could fill in at the last minute.”

A passenger bus carrying Turner’s tour crew crashed Wednesday night in California, killing one person and injuring seven. Turner and his band were not on the bus.

“Josh Turner and his road family have suffered a devastating loss,” Turner’s representatives said in a statement Thursday. “Please keep the crew, band and Josh in your thoughts and prayers.”

Vassar, who was known as a hit songwriter before he ever released a record of his own, has had 21 of his own singles on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart including two No. 1 hits, “Just Another Day in Paradise” in 2000 and “In a Real Love” in 2004.

General admission to all fair concerts is free with fair admission, but there are also reserved-seat tickets. The Vassar tickets, like the Turner tickets, are $38 and $45. The fair will honor Turner tickets for Vassar. If Turner ticket-buyers would prefer a refund, they can get one through the fair box office until 1 p.m. Friday. To do so they can call 608-577-7540 or email

The Turner tour crew bus was traveling eastbound on Highway 46 in San Luis Obispo County when it crashed in Shandon, Calif., late Wednesday night, the Associated Press reported. The trip followed a Turner concert at the Vina Robles Amphitheatre in Paso Robles.

Reach Pat Muir at