Monday, July 13, 2015

Kelly Clarkson Concert

Clarice (Cindy)
My sister-in-law turned sixty years old, so I got us tickets to see Kelly Clarkson at the Xfinity Center in Mansfield, MA. I haven't been to this venue in over twenty years. It was "Great Woods" when I last took my Self to see Bonnie Raitt for a birthday I can't remember which one it was. My SIL and I call each other "Clarice".

The Selfie
Anyway, Clarice suggested we tailgate before the concert. Other than tailgating before a Gamecock football game in SC, I have never done it. We each brought food, and I shared gin and tonics because she didn't like what she brought.. It was a beautifully clear night; warm and humid. The parking lot was packed. Police rode on bicycles and golf carts in and out of the lanes between parked revelers enjoying hot dogs on the charcoal barbies, and certainly not advertising their alcohol because, after all, there is no public drinking allowed. One such cart announced over a bull horn that it was time to pack up and head into the concert. We grabbed a frozen margarita in a plastic guitar glass and found our seats.

Xfinity Center
The concert began on time with a young female artist, Abi Ann, I never heard of. I was surprised because Pentatonix were the only other act advertised. She sang a couple of songs I recognized ("My Future Ex-Boyfriend" for one) and thanked Kelly for inviting her to join her. Abi Ann was quite good. Next came Eric Hutchinson. A huge sign hung behind him saying, "Eric Hutchinson is pretty good." He was, but he was also pretty boring. His songs sounded much the same. There was another break to tear down one set and build the stage-on-stage with lighted stairs for Pentatonix. All I can say about them is, "Wow!".

Pentatonix is an incredibly talented, twenty-something a capella group of five: one female and four males. I discovered them on Facebook, and bought a couple of their Christmas CDs. Hearing them live and with Xfinity's sound system was an out-of-body experience. The tonal quality of their voices is angelic. They rock with the best of them, and I could not sit still. This is the real reason I bought these concert tickets. I wanted to hear this group. Boy, was I happy I did. Go see them. Really.

Kelly's hair
Kelly came out last, of course, and her performance did not disappoint. She looked beautiful. She wore gorgeous, sparkly gowns and lovely, chic dresses throughout the concert. She looked very much "the Lady", but also "the Diva". I loved her new hair! She had it pulled up away from her face in a sixty-esque pompadoo with a gigantic braid down her back. The sides were cut very short, like a little boys' cut around her ears. The affect was quite stunning.

Her voice was perfect too. I only heard one minor mishap, but she can really hit those powerful high notes. We stood and danced throughout her performance. We had no choice. Everybody in front of us was standing. When I needed a break from dancing, I sat and watched what I could of the stage and used the large screens to see her. One sweet moment I witnessed was a small group of two young mothers and their ten-year-oldish daughters a few rows in front of us. During one song each daughter sat with her mother's arm around her swaying back and forth. Next, they were up and dancing together like girlfriends. What a joy to watch this perfect mother-daughter bonding night.

I have to say that I was also impressed with Kelly's generosity of spirit. She made a point of saying she encourages would-be singers to send her videos. She got her start "in a big open-mike night covered on national television" (that made everybody laugh"), and likes to help others get their start. So, out of all the videos she received, she chose one from a very talented young woman of about sixteen (I would guess) from Millis, MA. I regret I can't remember her name. Her voice was solid, high and really good. Kelly asked her if she had a web site so everyone could find her, and she announced her You Tube site, but I can't remember what it was. Sorry. I confirmed again that if you want to make a living doing what you love, you need a web site. Just sayin. During the encore, Kelly gave a song to her backup singers. She claimed to have the best singers in the world and wanted us to be able to hear them perform. They were very good. Once again, I am impressed by her generosity.

What a night!
It was a great, rockin' concert. Clarice and I danced the entire time. It felt really good to be in the open air, in comfy seats with plenty of leg room, and up dancing to fun music. I have never been to a Kelly Clarkson concert before, and I have to say that she puts on a very good show. Bravo, Kelly! I'd go again. Thanks for a great night. Happy Belated Birthday to me and Clarice!!!