We have returned from Portland after seeing the American Idols Live tour kick-off concert. There was something special about being a part of the crowd with whom the 2009 Top 10 lost their "tour-ginity."
Mike crashed when we got home with work tomorrow coming in an ungodly seven hours from now. And, no, he did not moonwalk to bed. But we did see moonwalkers in the Rose Garden lobby after the show. I figured they must have been having their own impromptu Michael Jackson salute because, contrary to the local newspaper predicting a Michael Jackson song from Adam Lambert and perhaps some from the entire group, the evening went on without a mention of the King of Pop. That was probably a good decision, as it could have seemed they were capitalizing on Jackson's name/fame in an effort to increase the star power of their tour.
The concert appeared to be sold out, what with the people standing in front of the arena before the show waving signs saying they needed tickets. The sound inside was deafening and I used my earplugs to protect not only the ear with the infection but also the one that the ear with the infection is counting on to cover for it while it's sick. After a few songs Mike yelled to me that he wished he had earplugs too, and I produced a second set from my purse for him. Even with foam plugs in my ears I had no problem hearing the show. Really, I think parents should have protected their children's fragile ears. A little boy sitting in front of me had his hands over his ears during much of the concert.
This is a 50-city tour (schedule here) and if you like AI even a little bit you will probably like the show, which is bound to improve as the group gains more and more stage experience city by city.
If you appreciate that Adam Lambert and Allison Iraheta, individually - and together - not only rock the house but also have a love affair going on with their fans, and that this is all happening at the beginning of probable stardom for both of them, you should go. Some others are definitely worth the ticket, too, namely Danny Gokey and Matt Giraud. Gokey was four days away from marking a full year since his wife died, and he had an amazing connection with the crowd in dedicating a song to the audience in her memory. It was inspirational -- not sappy -- and a real high point in the night.
Maybe as the tour moves along Kris Allen (who was the 2009 winner, after all) will gain more comfort and show more grace than he did last night (telling the crowd to "stop screaming" was weird and asking "How are you guys all doin'?" after two separate songs sounded disconnected and infantile). It's gotta be tough on the guy coming on last in what is supposed to be the grandness the whole show has been building toward but, in actuality, has just happened in the previous performance by way of Adam Lambert's brilliance.
As Matt Giraud began one of his songs at the piano the crowd erupted in applause and he told us (speaking over the first notes) how amazing this was for him because last year I was doing this in a hotel lobby........
.......It makes me wonder what might be ahead for my nephew, Noah, who aspires to a career as a musician. He writes and performs his own rock music. In this video from March 2009 the band is Opposing Lost, and the song is titled As I Lie Here Awake. Noah is the lead guitar/vocal on the left.
The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There's also a negative side.
-Hunter S. Thompson
Cartoon - fee paid to publish - from PoliticalCartoons.com