Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Review: Lady GaGa & Kelly Clarkson 5/4 @ HOB

The Boston stop for the T-Mobile and Grammys sponsored Grammy Celebration Tour included performances by Lady GaGa and Kelly Clarkson, and was hosted by season 4 American Idol contestant, Blake Lewis. The exclusive concert, which fans could only win tickets to, was an effort to bring together different types of music under one roof. While the two artists seem like complete polar opposites in terms of songs and performance, the two came together to perform two fantastic sets that were the audience thoroughly enjoyed.

With Blake Lewis starting off as the DJ and beat boxing his way through big radio hits, the crowd got warmed up as a giant white curtain covered the Grammy-decorated stage. As Lady GaGa’s image was projected onto the curtain, the crowd grew wild and excited. It is interesting to note that despite a huge mix of different types of people and fans, the crowd was extremely respectful of each other. There wasn’t any pushing or shoving, and there were no fights to break up. As Blake Lewis wrapped up his set and the lights dimmed, Lady GaGa’s intro video played.

Lady GaGa, famous for hits such as “Just Dance” and “Poker Face,” had just been in Boston a little over a month ago for her own tour, The Fame Ball. While she didn’t have as many of her props with her, she performed her full set from the tour. The crowd enthusiastically sang along to every song, causing Lady GaGa to break out of her strange persona and smile at the crowd during her acoustic set. She had all of her crazy costumes, and put on a fantastic hour-long set. As she finished with an encore of “Poker Face”, the crowd immediately began to shout for Kelly Clarkson.

As Lady GaGa’s props were moved off stage and Kelly Clarkson’s band’s equipment was rolled onto the stage, Blake Lewis returned to his DJ podium. He also threw free goodies from T-Mobile out into the crowd. While his own song didn’t get too much attention, he succeeded in keeping the crowd pumped for the show.

The lights dimmed for Kelly Clarkson to the beat of “Walk Away,” one of her many hits. As she moved into “Behind These Hazel Eyes” and new single “I Do Not Hook Up,” it was clear that the crowd was even more into Kelly Clarkson than they were for Lady GaGa, screaming the songs louder than Clarkson at many points. She put on a very different performance to Lady GaGa – showcasing her voice, and only her voice. Her band also gave the show a lot more energy. After complimenting Lady GaGa’s set and singing a bit of Poker Face, she began her one of many ramblings during the concert. Clarkson’s natural ability to interact with the crowd was fantastic, showing her personable character and funny personality.

One of her many classic moments was when she grabbed a phone from a fan in the front and spoke to the person on the other line, saying, “Hey, what’s up? This is Kelly Clarkson.” She then continued by telling the crowd, “I always feel like a douche saying, ‘This is Kelly Clarkson.’” As she wrapped up her main set with Grammy Award-winning “Since U Been Gone”, the crowd jumped up and down in unison and screamed every word.

As she quickly returned for the encore, she exclaimed, “I hate this whole encore thing – pretending to leave when it’s pretty obvious that I’m coming back.” After taking a request from her hardcore fans at the front and singing hidden track “Chivas” from her third album, she wrapped up the show with #1 hit “My Life Would Suck Without You.”

As a fan of both artists, this was a fantastic opportunity to see both artists in their element. While it would have been interesting to see the two artists collaborate, they both put on fantastic shows that are worthy of selling out venues on their own. I would definitely see both of them again next time they come out to Boston, and with the sounds of the crowd singing every one of their songs still ringing in my ears, I expect that will happen quite soon.

- Chris Cheong

1 comment:

jessy said...

ahhh funtime! didn't realize Blake was still around.