Special to DrFunkenberry.com
Written by Eric Greene.
Somebody call Neil deGrasse Tyson, Janelle Monae just set off the second Big Bang! The Electric Lady lit up the stage last week in a breath-taking concert for a few hundred thrilled fans at the I Heart Radio Theatre in Burbank (the former Tonight Show set). Monae opened with a premiere of "What is Love" from the upcoming RIO 2 soundtrack before leading her nine-piece band on a voyage through crowd-pleasers including "Cold War," "Dance Apocalyptic" "Primetime" and "Q.U.E.E.N."
Indeed, with her combination of indefatigable showmanship, musical versatility, playful inventiveness and commitment to craft in musicianship, design, dancing and more, Monae is by far the most exciting performer to break out since Prince himself. Part James Brown, part Stevie Wonder, part Erykah Badu and ALL Janelle Monae, the exhilarating scope of her artistic ambition defies simplistic categorization. How many artists simultaneously invoke seminal Buddhist texts and Dorothy Dandridge; gnostic Science Fiction and Neo-soul; Hip-Hop and Torch Songs? Monae does it all with a combination of skill, hard work, charisma and that all-too-rare quality in our narcissism-gone-wild culture: humility.
Andy Allo performed at Hotel Cafe on Monday, the last night of her residency to a packed house. Seconds after she took the stage, Prince glided in to catch the show.
Andy Allo kicked off her 45+ minute set with a new song that was quite beautiful but no title was given. Next was a funky version of "Yellow Gold" from her album "Superconductor" followed by a rock-sounding "Wait In Vain" by Bob Marley. Allo followed that up with another song from Superconductor, the beautifully-tinged "Nothing More" which I was extremely happy to hear live.
Richie Sambora performed material from his new album "Aftermath of A Lowdown" along with a few Bon Jovi classics in a 2 hour set that had Los Angeles rocking. The show was a benefit for Hurricane Sandy will all profits going to the Red Cross.
The new material was strong and his band was spot in with David Ryan Harris backing him up on guitar. BTW, if you get to Sambora's solo shows, make sure to get there early as David Ryan Harris is also the opening act.
Sambora kept the crowd enthused throughout the show. He said "I know you guys want to hear the Bon Jovi stuff and I promise you, we will get to it." They did, but the new material was so strong, it was an added bonus.
I heard from two other concert-goers they enjoyed Richie's take on "I'll Be There For You" and "Livin' On A Prayer" because they feel Richie's voice is fuller than Jon's nowadays.
For good measure, Sambora even covered "Hungry Heart" by Bruce Springsteen. At the time of writing, there are no further Sambora solo shows listed and he is slated to start touring with Bon Jovi in early 2013.-DocFB
Diagnosis: Thanks To Lisa Margaroli For Helping A Hobbled Doc....
Prince performed along with Andy Allo at the Sayers Club on Tuesday night for a crowd just over 200 in Hollywood.
After seeing Prince perform on Jimmy Kimmel Live, I headed over to The Sayers Club where I met Damaris Lewis, the model and guest dancer for Prince on his latest tour and we did a quick interview.
You had to check your cellphones at the door, so I knew that meant no tweeting of songs performed while they were happening like I have done in the past before writing a full review.
I strike up a conversation with Hannah Ford, Prince's guest drummer, and her husband Josh and talk about the experience she has had since joining the NPG. Through the night I talk with Elissa Fiorilo-Deese, Ida, and John Blackwell, the coolest people for sure.
It is around 12:20 when Andy Allo and her band enter with the horns playing as the entered stage left.
To read the entire review, including set lists, click on the continue reading button below....
We hope to have some cool videos and photos later from show, for now check out review above. Thank you G.-DocFB
Nikka Costa invaded California last week for 2 shows in Southern California and 2 shows in Northern California and the funk was hot, sweaty, and nasty.
The San Francisco shows were straight fire as you would expect. The shows in San Juan Capistrano and Redondo Beach brought out some real music lovers with Nikka doing about a 95 minute set alone in Redondo Beach, playing a plethora of her back catalog sans "Push & Pull" and I'm not sure if it was played at her other shows.
For more on Nikka including exclusive photos, click the continue reading button.
Van Halen did a dress rehearsal show for their upcoming tour last night at the Forum in Los Angeles. They performed classic hits and new ones like "Tattoo" from their latest album.
"Tattoo" is the latest single and doing quite well on the Rock Charts. Check out this live performance and let us know if it provides more power live.-DocFB
Van Halen did a 15 song set at the Los Angeles Forum last night. It was the final dress rehearsal and featured thousands of their friends and family.
It was supposed to be a "secret show" but was one of the worst kept secrets as we and others leaked the info shortly before noon yesterday. Kool & The Gang opened the show as they will for the tour and they brought the good time funk. It seems like a weird combo for a tour but it works.
For the full review along with exclusive pictures, click the continue reading button.