Thursday, September 25, 2014

Lily Allen at Terminal 5: A Lovefest!

I know I've been posting lots and lots of Lily Allen stuff all week, and for very good reason.  On Tuesday night I had the awesome experience of doing something that I never in a million years dreamed I'd be able to do, and that's to see her perform live in concert.  I was so excited that she was playing in New York that I didn't even care that I couldn't get anyone to come with me.  I went at it alone, and that was just fine because the experience was fantastic.

The venue was a new one for me, Terminal 5 on West 56th Street.  The place was nice, nicer than I expected, small and very intimate and with a very pleasant atmosphere.  The size of the venue only added to my excitement as I knew I'd catch really good views of the evening's star.  The show began precisely at 8 p.m. with opening act LolaWolf taking the stage delivering a 45 minute set of decent alterna-dance music and only about 20 minutes after they had finished, Lily took to the stage.

Been here before, so I'm prepared
Not gonna lie, I'm kinda scared
Lace up my gloves, I'm going in
Never let my kids watch me when I get in the ring

(Damn, I had no idea she played NYC in March!  I found this vid whilst looking for ones of the opening to Tuesday night's show, but both were bad quality.  Though the look of this one is very different from the show I attended, the energy from both the crowd and the singer are pretty much the same.  Mutual admiration and love!)

After a short musical intro, the familiar, slow and steady ha ha ha's of Sheezus began to blare out of the speakers as dancers, and then Lily, took to the stage to raucous cheers from the adoring audience. With a nod to her new-found motherhood, both the singer's red dress and the stage were adorned with baby bottles, a cool touch that is something that Lily's fans would totally get.   

For the next 90 minutes or so, Lily played an equal variety of familiar tunes from all of her three albums, 2006's Alright, Still, 2009's It's Not Me, It's You, and her current Sheezus.  The whole audience, including me, sang along to virtually every song with enthusiasm, from the country-twanged Not Fair to social commentary tunes like Everyone's At It and 22, the sunny Life For Me, LDN and probably the star's most identifiable hit, Smile, which the singer noted that it was the first song she'd ever written, almost ten years ago.  

Throughout the entire set, I was captivated!  Being in a space with 3,000 other folks who appreciate Lily Allen's wit and musical talent gave me a pure joy that's so rare an experience and I reveled in all of it.  The Brit songstress seemed to be both knowing and appreciative of the types of fans who are attracted to her and she, too, reveled in the happiness she was bringing to the fans, putting her mike out several times so she could hear us singing along to the saucy URL Badman, the zippy Late CMMR and the oh so seriously truthful, The Fear.   But aside from the momentous and fun finale, Hard Out Here, the performance of the evening came during her ode to the celebrated 2008 departure of former President George Bush, as the 6,000 middle fingers (and some pretty loud singing!) went to the air during the chorus of F**k You.    

Surely, a great time was had by all, especially me, and I've been listening to Lily ever since.  Oh, I'm sure it will wear off eventually, but for now I'll just keep listening and looking forward to another opportunity to see her again.  Cheers!

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