It is just human nature that we are a nostalgic group of beings, it is easy for us to be carried back to memories of our childhood through TV shows, books and music.
We can sit on the couch for hours mesmerized by a “M*A*S*H” marathon on television, and how many of us get sucked in when The Godfather is on? I, for one, could listen to music from the 70’s and 80’s on an endless loop, never again tuning into hip hop or whatever they call music nowadays.
Watching a performer smash cake into an enthusiastic fan’s face sounds like something that would happen at a Blue Man Group show, not an EDM concert.
But when the EDM performer in question is Steve Aoki, all bets are off.
On June 30, 101.9 AMP Radio‘s Electric Bounce House packed the House of Blues Orlando with local and visiting EDM fans for an extended lineup of DJs performing, finishing the evening with headliner Aoki and the popular singer Bebe Rexha.
The lights went down at the House of Blues and Walk the Moon takes the stage. As the adoration of the packed crowd calms down slightly, the band launches into a rendition of “Circle of Life” by Elton John. Fitting since they are on Disney property.
The crowd appears slightly bewildered but rises to occasion to sing along by the time the band gets to the chorus.
This past Sunday, my friend Joan and I made a day trip up to St. Augustine. Our primary goal was to see one of our favorites, Bryan Adams, in concert at the St. Augustine Amphitheatre, but we figured we’d go early and try out one of their restaurants.
We left around 2pm and got up there just before 4pm, slowed slightly by a thunderstorm en route. But as we rolled into the Historic Downtown area, it was sunny skies.
My connection at the St. Augustine CVB recommended A1A Ale Works as a restaurant to try, citing their craft brews and water-side dining. The restaurant is actually upstairs in a converted building on the corner next to the historic Bridge of Lions, with a bar area downstairs.
In 1990 Extreme‘s Pornograffitti album came out, and I was blown away by how good it was from start to finish. It was rock with a touch of funk and a lot of attitude, with some beautiful ballads thrown in.
Flash forward 25 years, and I’m waiting inside the House of Blues Orlando, waiting to hear Extreme perform the entire Pornograffitti album live. Yes, I’d heard most of the songs live in various concerts over the years, but this would be the first time I would hear the album played all the way through.
Last week, I took in this month’s edition of Velvet Sessions at the Hard Rock Hotel Orlando to see one of my favorite musicians of all time: Howard Jones.
The Velvet Sessions take place the last Thursday of the month (most months) in the intimate setting of the hotel’s lobby area. The seating is removed, bars are set up around the side and back from the stage, which occupies one wall.
This past Sunday evening, Hard Rock Live Orlando was THE place to be for the kickoff of The Very Best of Celtic Thunder Tour 2015 in North America. The 3,000-seat venue was sold out with “Thunderheads” (as their fans are called) who were more than ready to hear “the boys”, Ryan Kelly, Neil Byrne, Emmett O’Hanlon, Colm Keegan, Keith Harkin and Special Guest Artist (and former founding member) Damian McGinty do what they do best.
Opening act NINA, supported with strong percussion and vocals by Laura Fares, stayed in line with the synth beats the crowd was there for, yet paired them with spiritual and soulful voices that gave us a trance-like, almost ethereal feeling. Their music, described as a blend of dream pop / moody disco, with songs like ‘Dark Rider’, ‘We Are The Wild Ones’ and ‘Sweet Surrender’, got us started on this retro-modern kind of evening.
Before last night, I was a fan of ZZ Ward‘s music. But now, I’m also a fan of her personally, along with her openers The Wild Feathers, and James Bay. If you weren’t at the House of Blues Orlando on September 24, then you missed one hell of a show.
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Singer/songwriter James Bay opened the show. Hailing from the UK, Bay reminds me of artists like Gavin DeGraw and John Meyer, with a lot of British Soul mixed in.
He took the stage with just a guitar – no backing band at all – and proceeded to do an amazing set, that seemed way too short to me. Yes, he was that good.