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30 June 2008
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Melissa Etheridge Concert Non-Review

I saw her at Ives Park in Danbury, CT. on Sunday night. This is a mid-size, open-air venue - about 2700 reserved and lawn seats. Given the thunderstorm forecast I'm glad I didn't know about the lack'o'roof until I got there.  (Despite the forecast, the weather was perfect.)  I was never a Melissa Etheridge fan.  I'm familiar with her big hits from constant repetition and like but don't love them.  I otherwise know little about her.

This is not a concert "review."  I'm not familiar with her album material and couldn't present a set list to save her life. This was not the best concert I've ever been to - that would have been Heart at the Capitol Theater a few years ago. Melissa is by no means the most physically prepossessing performer. She was dressed like a civilian and the most flash on stage was the person of her guitarist.

Why this babble, then? I have to tell you that she has got to be one of the most dynamic and energetic and professional and yes, great rock performers I have ever had the privilege to see.  The Wow-o-Meter needle kept hitting the red during her three-hour(!) set, performed with only a tiny break between the last song and the encore.

Her fans clearly agreed.  One apologized to me several time for nearly damaging me with her swinging hair.  (I'm pretty robust, and never felt that either of us was in danger of becoming a unique statistic.)  Of course Bruuuuce is the standard exemplar of legendary performance.  If all Melissa Etheridge shows are as good as last night's, I'd be keen to see if Springsteen can keep that title.

Half a Year To Go

Although it didn't influence my opinion of her performance, I had almost the best seats in the not-house, courtesy of Ticketmaster.  (Presumably their system was broken.  Normally, seats from Ticketmaster are distinguished by their cost rather than their quality.)  In any event, I was so close that when she came up to my side of the stage I was able to take a bunch of pictures from only a few feet away.  They should have been so good as to be publishable.  Instead, they look like this

and are an embarrassment to the cellphone camera that took them.

The camera in my Motorola Q has six months to live, after which period my "contract" expires.  I'm hoping that between now and then someone will finally produce a cellphone for music lovers instead of one with years of talk time but little memory and a crappy camera.  Sigh.


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Thank you.


NP:  Roof repair noises - but I'm downloading Melissa's music from Yahoo even as I type.

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