Prince Rocks Opening Night Of His “Welcome 2 America” Tour At The Izod

Last night, Prince kicked off what we hope is just the first leg of his “Welcome 2 America” tour with a rocking show at the Izod Center in New Jersey. Oh it was funky y’all!!

We were treated to not one, but two opening acts before Prince took the symbol-shaped O(+> stage. First up was jazz artist Esperanza Spalding who we’d seen perform at the Prince tribute during the 2010 BET Awards earlier this year. Then it was time for soul songstress Lalah Hathaway who was beautiful in a flowing blue dress. Both ladies would join Prince during his set later on – Spalding for co-vocals on “If I Was Your Girlfriend” and Hathaway sharing vocals on “Sometimes it Snows in April” and “Diamonds and Pearls”.

Then it was time for the one and only. “I am here, where r u?” Prince asked the crowd after opening with the funky, unexpected “Lay Down” track from his album 20Ten. The crowd was in a frenzy as Prince strutted around the stage in a gold ruffle shirt, black pants, sunglasses and a long leather coat. He was ready to funk.

That was the only new song we’d hear as it was a night for Prince classics and fan favorites. We were treated to “Beautiful Ones” IN ITS ENTIRETY – the ladies were going crazy for this one, especially when he screamed “Do u want me?”. Yes we do!!!

Other classic hits we heard included “Cream”, “Raspberry Beret”, “Uptown”, “Let’s Work” – so many hits, so little time! Hardcore fans were pinching themselves when Prince strapped on his new gold guitar (that will be auctioned off for charity after the tour) and launched into “She’s Always in my Hair”, a favorite b-side from 1985 (thank u Prince!!!).

Prince was backed up by three talented singers all night – Elisa Dease, Liv Warfield and Shelby J, who fans were surprised to see as she lost her father unexpectedly last week. But the music must be healing because Shelby was in great form and performed a beautiful version of “Angel” by Sarah McLachlan with her sisters backing her up. Shelby also waved a large flag during “Purple Rain” that had an angel drawn on it with some writing. A tribute to her Dad perhaps? We couldn’t read it from our side of the stage.

Prince and Shelby performed a great duet of “Nothing Compares 2 U” – great chemistry and love there. Prince acknowledged her return by saying “it’s good to have you back”.

Prince broke it down later in the show with some steamy ballads – “Insatiable”, “Scandalous”, and the lady-melting “Adore”. Wooh – we could hardly contain ourselves!! He closed out the main set with a long rendition of “Purple Rain” and had the entire arena on its feet, waving their arms. He worked every corner with his Hohner, calling for more “Woo ooo ooo ooo!”‘s from the hyped up crowd.

But we weren’t done yet! Not even close! We got a long encore that kicked off with “Kiss” – Prince’s latest substitution in the song? “You don’t have to watch…the L Word…to have an attitude”. LOL! Spalding and Hathaway performed with Prince during the encore, and we also got Prince on piano for a quick version of “All the Critics Love U in New York” – of course, how could we not have predicted he’d play this??

We go one more dose of serious funk with “Controversy” – clap your hands, stomp your feet (mine still hurt today!). It was thick! Then some fans were invited on stage to dance and party along with “Sexy Dancer” and “Le Freak” by Chic.

Prince had amazing energy all night long, and the band was in great form. Prince’s dance moves during Kiss were awesome – you could tell he was just feeling the funk and enjoying the moment. We can’t wait to see what he brings on Friday night at the Izod, when Maceo Parker and Cassandra Wilson will join him.

Thanks 2 Prince and the band for a GREAT show!!!



  • Erica
    Posted at 20:47h, 21 December

    I know right Dave B lol! A well respected and highly intelligent Professor up there workin’ it out, I was like woahhhh! lol! I enjoyed it when they all got up there. I was in a very good section too, seen everything that went on onstage =).

    And yes yes yes! FRIDAY was THE highlight…that was a GREAT NIGHT :). I sat in Section 106 right next to the entrance and my row 26 (the very last one) had lots of space for me to dance in lol. I also kept bumping into people I knew from the NY and NJ salsa scene too lmao, odd enough =) Cassandra and Maceo were great, never seen them perform in person like that before. I like what Prince is doing – serving as Master of Ceremonies, this was a great idea.

  • Dave B
    Posted at 00:55h, 21 December

    “Prince & Sheila eventually invited some celebs to dance onstage during the finale before the show ended.”

    A couple of others: Tavis Smiley, and Dr. Cornell West! (how many performers have a professor/philosopher come up on stage to dance with them? LOL – it was quite a diverse collection of fans Prince had there on stage).

    Great show Saturday, though I enjoyed Friday’s more (show was longer, & also I had better seats. I also enjoyed Friday’s opening sets by Cassandra Wilson & Maceo Parker).

  • Erica
    Posted at 15:27h, 20 December

    (Ok attempting the continuation, the 2nd part of my “concierto review” :0P, hope it posts right, the other ones got messed up. Again, this is just my experience being at the concert, some funny moments, some cool moments, etc etc. Oh what the heck let me spell it out and stop being lazy – ECETERA! lol!)

    So I was actually sitting right next to the friendly security guy ( we at times conversed back and forth in both english and spanish) he was a pretty cool dude too. He even showed me the program of the whole show, what times they were coming onto the stage, etc. =) I was also sitting right behind one of the camera crew guys, and also MORRIS HAYES was right near our section he was sitting like right inbetween sections 68 through mine – 69.

    THE HOUSE WAS PACKEDDDDD! and when I say PACKED it really was packed it was a SOLD OUT SHOW. And it will be the same for the 29th. The only thing is that I need to exchange my nosebleed seats for closer ones lolol, because this show is just too fabulous to sit so far away like that.

    Prince & Sheila eventually invited some celebs to dance onstage during the finale before the show ended. I can only name a few that I’ve seen on the screen: JAMIE FOXX, SINBAD, SPIKE LEE WHO IS AN AVID NY KNICKS FAN LIKE ME LOL, WHOOPI GOLDBERG, ALICIA KEYS WHO LOOKS GREAT AFTER HAVING HER BABY!, SHERRI SHEPPARD SHE WAS OH SO EXCITED TO BE UP THERE LOL!, QUESTLOVE, and some others that I forgot, I was too into dancing and enjoying the atmosphere that I couldn’t really keep up with how many were on that stage lolol

    Now the only downfall was that there was some BORING people sitting RIGHT NEXT TO ME…I was the only one in my row dancing my ass off, and here are these people to my left either sitting or standing still, not partying like I was. I was like “ain’t this some SHIZZAT!” lolol I told the security guard “I wish I wasn’t in this row man, this is a Prince concert, you don’t stay still at any of his concerts!!!” the security guard looked at them and then he said to me ” yeah they must not be enjoying themselves” lol! It was weird sitting next to them. But good thing I continued not to pay them any mind.

    Like I said, when you attend a PRINCE concert, you do not sit down or stay still – you are at a party =)

    But anyway that’s all I have for now =) again it was a fantastic night. However the 17th was THE HIGHLIGHT of my Prince concert experience thus far, because Sheila E appeared out of nowhere that night and because of that it was truly an unforgettable experience. =)

    I’ll be back for the next one! 29th!

    Add me on facebook if u haven’t already, I also post crazy/silly stuff on there lolol. And here is my tweetin twitter: lareina777

    Adios for now =)

  • Erica
    Posted at 10:08h, 20 December


    I know – those were the kinds of wack ass comments that I did see, and its ridiculous…what’s even more sad is that its being done by adults who never grew up in spirit. They are great examples of hot messes who never even got their own mierda together lol. Those pendijitos need to talk to the hand lmao.

    Well I liked Larry live, I think he’s great & he sure does slap that bass! 🙂 There were people dancing in my section too, especially when he came on with “Thank You”…the beat of the music is what makes people get up, but its Larry’s bass in the song that really made people feel it.

  • Muzicluva3121
    Posted at 04:07h, 20 December

    Not everyone hates him. I’m sure the audience loved him.

  • Muzicluva3121
    Posted at 04:05h, 20 December

    Quite often on Youtube or or even Facebook, people will be saying something like “Larry Graham- the man who destroyed Prince” or “I loved Prince before he joined that cult”.

  • recoveringlastnight
    Posted at 22:38h, 19 December

    The two most hated on people Larry G & Bria valente were there at MSG last night!! Larry G the legend – rocked it!! Bria, wowowee is one gorgeous woman and she looked seriously hot dancing on stage with the celebz in that open back black shiny dress. Smiling and having fun, what it’sall about. Prince is undeniable, he is the best ever that i have seen in my life!! Sheila came and conquered! Shelby J was a highlight for me, her interaction with Prince was playful and cool friendship there. All smiles today thanks Prince!

  • douglas
    Posted at 22:33h, 19 December

    Prince was great last night. Holy shite!

  • Erica
    Posted at 22:29h, 19 December


    Not true – the audience loved Larry and his band. They were great, trust me on this.

  • Chocolate_Box777
    Posted at 20:23h, 19 December


    ” people on are negative about EVERYTHING. They hate you if you don’t think P is a nasty person. They call you a fam. So I wouldn’t take any notice of them.”


  • Muzicluva3121
    Posted at 16:48h, 19 December

    I’ve heard people keep saying Larry made Prince ‘boring’. Not true at all!

  • Muzicluva3121
    Posted at 16:40h, 19 December

    Erica, people on are negative about EVERYTHING. They hate you if you don’t think P is a nasty person. They call you a fam. So I wouldn’t take any notice of them.

  • Erica
    Posted at 13:28h, 19 December

    oh wow it posted many times lol sorry about that , my bad 🙂

  • Erica
    Posted at 13:25h, 19 December

    (I realized that this “concert review” of mine was too long lolol so I’m going to break it up in parts…this will also be posted on my FB Notes

    K so I went to last night’s show (YES BEEN ATTENDING ALL OF THEM LOL!) and it was off the hook!!! I had a great seat where I could see everything, section 69 row K seat 15….when i got there some dude was sitting in my seat conyooooo! lol and the security guy made his ass get up! lol! :0P that’s right baby, i bought the tix git cho ass up partna lol just kidding but yeah he made him move..

    SIDEBAR: I’ve been reading some very rude comments about Larry Graham on and I need to say this….these UNGRATEFUL PEOPLE on these fan websites need to STOP HATIN on a legend….Larry Graham is to be respected….& if u don’t have something nice to say? then shut up, caiete la boca y no dice nada porque no tengo la paciencia para los estupidos mmmkay lol. It was my first time seeing the man play live and on stage and these HATERS stay talking all of that BS….well I’m here to tell you that HE ROCKED THE GARDEN, so if u wanna keep hatin, then go right ahead, you are doing your job, but at the same time YOU AIN’T GETTIN PAID FOR IT EITHER lmaooooo RESPECT THE LEGEND and respect true talent.

    (continued in next post)

  • Chocolate_Box777
    Posted at 21:21h, 18 December

    Where were all thesec omment people a few months ago?

  • Alyssia
    Posted at 16:12h, 18 December

    Too bad,I’m too far!
    Thanks for sharing that <3

  • Erica
    Posted at 14:05h, 18 December

    OHHH EMMM GEEE YALL!!! Last night’s show (12/17) was FAB!!! SHEILA E appeared out of nowhereeee!! We didn’t expect her to be there yet, and she just showed up, and as soon as she appeared we all went CRAZY AS all heezie!! lol!! When I seen those timbales man, I went loca…I’m a social salsa dancer from NYC so you know how us salseros y salseras get when it comes to our Caribbean music now!

    I’m not that great at reviews, but I am great for posting too many damn updates to my FB during the concerts lolol….Prince, Maceo Parker, Cassandra Wilson, and the surprise Sheila E all BROUGHT THE HOUSE DOWNNNN!

    If you have never been to a Prince concert, please go! You will not be sitting down, you will dance the whole night. Never sit down at a Prince concert lol!

  • fonkyandy
    Posted at 08:51h, 18 December

    @madsex! agree for the part of Prince’s european shows. Haven’t seen “Welcome 2 America”, but I read he has per4med not longer than 2 hours at max yet, probably due to guest opening sets. Saw Antwerpen, Prince blew that town away per4ming a 3 hour set! Saw Berlin, the guy was in such a perfect mood, that were 2.5 hours of pure un4gettable summer funk and energy!!!

  • Redbird7
    Posted at 21:11h, 17 December

    Sounds AAAwesome, like your having fun, Im in misery, LLLLLLLove it!!!, REdbox and Coconut, M&Ms, Except your Fate and like it, lOOOking Redhot.

  • Erica
    Posted at 13:55h, 17 December

    My facebook is attached to this post if anyone wants to add me on. Just don’t ask me for my address and telephone # lol

  • Erica
    Posted at 13:54h, 17 December

    This was a fab review of this past Wed’s concert =). I was there btw, I sat so high up in the 200s section (NEVER AGAIN I hate that section! lol)…HOWEVER, I still got a good view of what went on onstage =). It was great to see Prince & the guitar that he’s had for so many years in person for the 1st time.

    Oh and John Blackwell kilt it on the drums during “SHHH”, loved the red glow in the dark drumsticks that was 2 kewl; it was great seeing him in person too.

    Esperanza was FANTASTIC…we need more jazz musicians like her…she is a true talent and she has such beautiful hair.

    Looking forward to tonight’s show!! Where I’ll be sitting a little closer in the 100s this time! hayyyyy! *does a double snap & a diva headroll* lol

  • controversy12
    Posted at 09:48h, 17 December

    Thanks Doc I really enjoyed reading your review … I wish I could have been there sounds like everyone had a FUNKY Good Time .

  • Muzicluva3121
    Posted at 06:26h, 17 December


  • dancedwithhim
    Posted at 05:43h, 17 December

    A dvd is coming soon.

  • madsex
    Posted at 02:39h, 17 December

    i’m happy for all of you who had a good time. but this i hope was only the beginning. nothing to compare with europe. energy level wasn’t close to the past few shows such as arnheim, antwerpen, brussels, copenhagen or milano. despite the opening (lay down, black muse) and the duets this show was just a moneymaking rutine. but hey even an mediocre prince show is better than 90 % of the bullshit artist, musicians or slaves of the system pull out. but still, all i can tell u if he’s getting there again where he left europe, this show will not be mentioned or remembered anymore. just to let u know but this show was not fonky!!! wait until he’s as playfull and unpredictable as a month ago. i dont want to offend anybody but this show was definitly the lamest of 2010, it can only get better and so can the crowd. how can u sit down during controversy? this is not a movie, this is prince concert and you are a part of it. if u want to sit down, stay home and watch a dvd!!!! u only life once so get up and move your asses!!!!

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