Ain’t nothing better than live music. NOTHING. It is one thing to hear it on a record while you are in your car or sitting in your window sill and just hearing it. But to experience live instrumentation, physical artistic expression, and not to mention the screaming fans…it kind of makes the songs more…real. Like you were there when they created it. That is how I feel every time I hear Dwele, Anthony David, and Collette perform. It is in these moments that I remember that I am a music fan first, music blogger second. I am one of the audience members that gets lost in it, and I am not ashamed.
Southern belles always know how to draw a crowd. That is what happened when Collette, the amazon beauty from South Carolina, took the stage and opened her mouth. Fresh off the release of her most recent project, Juneteenth Revolution, Collette shared herself with the audience as the only woman on the bill for the evening. Opening her set with a smooth rendition of the National Anthem, Collette caught the ears of an eager audience. It was only right for her to continue this by singing tracks such as “Be Careful” and my personal favorite, “Material Star”. Collette set the tone and grabbed every audience member’s attention from the gate with her covers of Beyonce’s “Love On Top” and Angie Stone’s “Brother”, an added spark to the flame she already lit. Nothing like an opener who really knows how to involve the crowd and making them fall in love with her.
Next up was the Atlanta crooner and all around gentleman, Mr. Anthony David. It is not a secret that his last album, Love Out Loud, was a tremendous success and full of all the Anthony David goodness we know and love. David is the kind of singer that not only makes you fall for him on record, but also in person. Stepping on stage with a gray blazer, looking all fine and thangs (yes…THANGS), David gave you a little bit of old, a little bit of new, and a perfect blend of the in between. If you have been a David fan like I have for like EVER, then you understand how awesome it was to hear him do some of his old joints like “Kin Folk”, “Words”, “Smoke One”, and “Cold Turkey”. And though his album came out in November, people were absolutely in love with the words.
There aren’t enough words to describe the level of magnificence that Dwele exudes on stage. It is almost as if creativity just seeps through his hair follicles like glitter and blesses the audiences. That is what is like to be around Dwele and see him in his element. To be honest, I think he’s somewhat shy on stage, but his music forces him not to be. And that is okay. The way that the ladies were grabbing on his coat and tugging at his beard, I’d be surprised if he didn’t go home with a few pieces of unmentionables in his pocket with phone numbers attached. You got to love a man who sings all of his classics and blends in his new tracks. When you sing “Angel”, “I’m Cheatin'”, “Swank”, “I Understand”, and “Obey” (listen….just know that my knees gave out and I was standing by the bar. My friends had to hold me up!), all on the same bill, I’m not sure how anyone made it out there dry. Dwele has a presence that comes through his music that gives him a different kind of a confidence. If you were in the audience that night, then you know exactly what I’m talking about. You could feel it when he closed his set with “Find A Way” and walked through the crowd crooning to all of the ladies. It is good to see him relishing off of the success of his latest album, Greater Than One, but never forgetting to pay homage to his home, Detroit, and singing some of the classics for the old school fans. This is kind of performance you talk about for years to come. Dwele did that.
B.B. Kings always knows the right sets to put on to get people involved and falling in love with music all over again. It is that kind of mentality to keeps B.B. Kings at the top of their game. Kudos to them.
Props to Reggie Duvivier for providing the awesome photos and helping me maintain my composure for the night. He understands the life that I live as a music fan first (word to Erro).