Barenaked ladies at the Shepherds Bush Empire

If I had $1000000, If I had $1000000… I’d be rich

This not so known but fairly old skool Canadian band was playing at the Shepherd’s Bush Empire last Thursday. The venue is fairly small and it was easy to walk all the way up to the stage.
The band was promoting their holiday album and much of the performance revolved around Christmas spirit. Alternative versions of Jingle Bells and Feliz Navidad (Próspero Año y Felicidad) were played. As usual the real crowd pleasers were classics like Pinch me and If I had a million dollars.
At one point the band members decided to swap places with each other and the main singer ended up playing drums, the bas player ended up playing keyboard, the keyboard player took over the at the bas and the drummer positioned himself at the microphone. Another act that showed how musical and talented the Barenaked ladies are.
Besides being great at playing music, the Barenaked ladies knew how to entertain. Small anecdotes, jokes and all things are better in three were fused into several of their classic songs. Often resulting in LOLs from the audience.

Latin rhythms: Monica Vasconcelos and Nois

The other day we were invited to “a concert in a church” by some friends. To our pleasant surprise, it was Monica Vasconcelos and the group Nois (us) performing.
We were swept away by Monica’s smooth voice and passionate performance. The beauty of her voice is only rivalled by her own beauty.
As a guest, Monica had invited “Chinga” who turned out to be an exceptional guitar player. His two solos, accompanied by light percussion, were possibly the highlight of the concert.
The concert was performed at the Union Chapel, Islington, London and there was even a small bar where you could get a double scotch to go with the Jazz.
Make sure to check out some of the albums by Monica Vasconcelos and Nois.

BBC Proms in the park (Hyde Park)

We have watched Proms in the Park occasionally on TV and were always amazed by the amount of people that showed up and how much they seemed to enjoy them selves. This year we decided to have a look.
The 4pm opening of the gates was delayed to 5pm, most likely due to additional security checks.
Björn Again performance was as tacky as expected but people around us seemed to love it. The band was bellowing out crowd pleasers like Waterloo and Super trooper. Spontaneous group dance routines broke out in various places around us.
The classical parts of the concert were performed by Ramon Vargas, BBC Concert Orchestra, Denise Leigh and more. Ramon Vargas braved the windy conditions and sang well know pieces from Tosca. The strong winds distorted the various performances a bit but were very powerful nevertheless.
Some people were prepared; others were very well prepared. Most had their blankets and pick-nick baskets with them including plenty of booze. Others had in addition brought foldable tables, inflatable sofas and portable lanterns. Clearly, it wasn’t their first time at the proms.
I suspect that most people in the park, certainly our party, had been waiting for The Corrs finale as a highlight of the evening. It was loud and captivating as The Corrs can be. It was the first time we had the chance to see them live and it was worth the (5.5 hours) wait.
We didn’t want to leave our golden retriever Ginger at home alone all of the day. Especially since weekends are her quality time days. So she came along, and was the only dog on ground, and behaved extremely well, and made many new (drunken) friends, and was fed to the bursting point…

The Darkness, Brixton Academy, London

My ears are very clean and my socks have been rocked off. I have been blasted with the ear splitting rock music of The Darkness.
The band has quickly become popular; most notably due to their presence at the MTV Europe awards where they received the MTV2 UK award.
Their music style is a fast paced flamboyant rock and the show is spectacular. Full of lights, smoke, fire, rock jumps in catsuits and all accompanied with the high-pitched vocals of Justin Hawkins.
Several crowd pleaser were performed like Growing on me, Get your hands of my woman and I Believe In A Thing Called Love. The show ended with the not yet released Christmas Time (Don’t Let The Bells End)’ where a dozen of children joined the band on stage. The soft voices of the children being drowned by electric guitar and drums was hilarious.

If you missed yesterdays concert at the Brixton Acadamy you will have plenty more chances because the band is doing an UK tour at the moment. Recharge your pacemakers however, because the show is real shock to the system.
“The Darkness. Brixton Academy. December 2003. I was there” (photos)