Music has played, and I beg your pardon on the pun, a nice background tune on my life. It’s always been there, often times defining many of the memories that I’ve been lucky enough to garner over my life. From jamming to Kanye West’s Late Registration in my sister’s car during my Freshman year of high school, to falling asleep to Guns ‘N’ Roses “Sweet Child Of Mine” on trips to Marquette Mountain during middle school, I’ve always loved music but have never been able to make it or become intimately attached to it, other than listening.
I realized as I moved into Madison that I’d have an opportunity to connect more with music, especially given the lively small-venue scene that pervades Madison’s music culture. I was able to attend a lot of concerts, big and small, from Kid Cudi to Chris Webby, and even The Frey. It was an awesome time in my life.
I even was able to write album reviews for the Badger Herald. I didn’t write many, but the ones I did write forced me to connect deeper to music than I had before.
I hit a monetary lull after I studied abroad my Junior year of college and so I forewent going to shows and stuck to Youtube. I abandoned writing about music all together, but still listened to as much as I could.
After moving to D.C., I was on a very limited budget, and still can’t afford to do too many shows. I, however, have been able to attend a few more live shows this year than I have in the past few years. It’s been awesome to get to see live artists again and reconnect with live sounds.
At the beginning of last month, I saw JoJo. Yes, THAT JoJo. And she was wonderful live. She had a great stage presence and truly integrated the audience into her music. She can absolutely sing and I’d really recommend everyone getting to catch a show on her MadLove Tour. If she doesn’t wow you, her band and back-up vocalists absolutely will.
I also was able to see Ariana Grande at the Verizon Center. She was glamorous. This was one of the larger venue concerts I’ve ever seen. She exceeded a lot of my expectations. Her show was simple, but elegant, really emphasizing the range of her voice. She played essentially her whole catalog and it was awesome.
I was secretly hoping for a surprise appearance from her current boo-boo, Mac Miller for a duet on “Favorite Part“, but unfortunately, it wasn’t meant to be. None-the-less, she was saintly and I am excited to see what else she has on deck in the future.
I’ve really enjoyed going to more concerts and plan on hitting a few more this summer. Who do you want to see this summer?
Slide in the comments &/or DMs with your faves!