A Year of Concerts: 2014

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Yusuf Islam / Cat Stevens | “Peace Train … Late Again” Tour | Nokia Theatre L.A. Live | 12/14/14 [Concert Review & Photos]

Yusuf Islam / Cat Stevens | “Peace Train … Late Again” Tour | Nokia Theatre L.A. Live | 12/14/14 [Setlist & Video Clips]

Jamestown Revival, Nikki Lane & Pete Molinari | The Troubadour | 11/30/14 [Concert Review]

Jamestown Revival | The Troubadour | 11/30/14 [Photos and Video]

Nikki Lane | The Troubadour | 11/30/14 [Photos and Video]

Pete Molinari | The Troubadour | 11/30/14 [Photos and Video] Continue reading

Jill Scott | BET Experience | 6/27/14 [PHOTOS]

 CLICK HERE TO SEE THE OTHER PERFORMANCES THAT I CAUGHT DURING THE BET EXPERIENCE AT L.A. LIVE

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I have been a fan of Jill Scott since the first time I heard her track “Do You Remember?”. That song moved me like no other. Her incredible voice, together with lyrics that spoke to a love remembered, hit the money spot in my musical soul.

Screen Shot 2014-06-10 at 5.38.46 PMSpeaking of money, money was kind of tight, and since I wasn’t approved for a media pass for this concert, it looked like I wouldn’t be able to attend the show. Desperate to find a way into the concert, I even tried to send Ms. Scott a letter over Twitter to see if she could get me in to the show.  She never responded to my tweet. Wishful thinking, I know.

Thinking that all hope was lost, I went as far as to register to win tickets through other venues.  I entered to win tickets through Complex Magazine, and as the fates would have it, I won. Lucky me.

Jill Scott’s set was everything that I had been waiting for since 2000. Her voice was as powerful and as delicate as ever, singing both classic tunes from her repertoire and a handful of new songs. I only wished that her set was an hour longer as she clearly couldn’t perform all of the songs that I loved in her hour long time slot.

I wasn’t able to find a setlist online, but you can CLICK THIS LINK to get directed to a collection of Instagram Videos with snippets of most, if not all, of the songs that were performed at this concert.

I wasn’t approved for a photo pass for this performance, so I was only armed with my trusty, pocket-sized point and shoot camera. Not the best, but not to shabby sitting several hundred fee away if you ask me.

CLICK HERE TO SEE THE OTHER PERFORMANCES THAT I CAUGHT DURING THE BET EXPERIENCE AT L.A. LIVE

Jill Scott | BET Experience | 6/27/14 [Instagram Videos]

CLICK HERE TO SEE THE OTHER PERFORMANCES/EVENTS THAT I CAUGHT DURING THE BET EXPERIENCE AT L.A. LIVE

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Below are clips of each of the songs that Jill Scott performed at this show. I may have missed a song or two. I hope you enjoy it.

CLICK HERE TO SEE THE OTHER PERFORMANCES/EVENTS THAT I CAUGHT DURING THE BET EXPERIENCE AT L.A. LIVE

BET Experience at L.A. Live | 6/27/14 – 6/28/29

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Last year, I got the royal treatment at the BET Experience. Not only did I get the chance to see BeyonceSnoop, Kendrick Lamar, J. ColeR. Kelly, New Edition and The Jacksons perform on the main stage, but I was able to score an “Artist Pass” for the entire weekend, which allowed me to roam freely backstage at Staples Center. Armed with only a small Sony Cybershot G, I took photographs the best I could and actually ended up with some decent shots. After that weekend, I decided to take concert photography more seriously, because I determined that it was something that I truly had a passion for. Since that weekend, I’ve invested in some “professional” photography equipment that I could afford and have been self teaching myself how to snap, what I think, are decent concert photographs.

This year, I didn’t use any of my entertainment contacts to score a special tickets or photo/media passes. Rather, I applied independently as a blogger. Though I didn’t get any media or photo passes for any of the main evening concerts, I was approved for certain daytime events at the BET Experience at L.A. Live on Saturday and Sunday. The daytime events on Saturday and Sunday were free and open to the public, and it’s my opinion that anybody who is fan of soul, R&B and hip-hop music, and didn’t go to witness any of the events, missed out on a hell of an opportunity.

As fate would have it, I Complex Magazine saw fit to award me tickets to see the Friday evening concert featuring Jill Scott and Maxwell. I tried to sneak my DSLR and lenses into the Staples Center for that show, but ended up having to check my bag at guest services. However, I was able to use my trusty Sony Cybershot G point and shoot to take a handful of pictures that I think are worth posting on my blog.

Below is a list of all of the wonderful singers/rappers/performers that I was able to capture with my cameras. You’ll notice below that for each performance, I’m posting two separate pages: one for Instagram video captures, and one for photographs and my thoughts on the performance. I tried to take Instagram videos of each of the songs all of the artist’s performed. I don’t know everything about each artist, so if you know the names of the songs an artist sings, please let me know in the comments so I  can add it to the post.

I hope that what I’ve captured gives you a sense of what I experienced over the weekend. The photo/review pages will be posted in due course, as a solo blogger, editing and selecting pictures “worthy” of sharing takes a little bit a time. Hey, I took over 2000 pictures! Cut me some slack! LOL.

6/27/14 (Friday)

6/28/14 (Saturday)

6/29/14 (Sunday)

Laura Mvula | “That’s Alright” (Video and Lyrics)

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2013 may very well be a GREAT year for new female vocalists.  I’ve already been smitten by Nai Palm, the lead singer of Hiatus Kaiyote … and now Laura Mvula is looking to squeeze her way into my heart as well.

My interest in Laura Mvula had already been stirring and I’ve posted short blog entries about her songs “Jump Right Out” and “She”, but she just release a new video for her latest single “That’s Alright” and it’s blowing me away. It heavy on rhythms and chants and really comes out punching.  Definitely contrasting to her more delicate fair that I’ve grown accustomed to.  With her rich alto tone, and jazz/soul/gospel sensibilities, she sings out rebelling against an unknown antagonist, proclaiming her autonomy and self worth and chastising him/her with a chorus of “Who made you the center of the universe”.

Her first major label album, “Sing to the Moon”, was released March 4, 2013 abroad, but the CD, LP and digital downloads don’t seem to be available yet in the U.S.  RCA needs to get on the stat. And if it’s never going to be released in the states, I may very well have to spend the extra cash to purchase imports…

For your listening pleasure, Laura Mvula’s “That’s Alright”:

(Verse)
I will never be what you want and that’s alright,
Cause my skin ain’t light and my body ain’t tight.
And that’s alright.
But if I might, I must stand and fight.

I will never be what you want and that’s alright,
I play my own damn tune, I shine like the moon.
And very soon, I’ll soon fly over you.
And what you gonna do when I fly over you?

(Chorus)
Tell me who made you the center of the universe?
Who made you the center of the universe?
Who made you the center of the universe?
Who made you the center of the universe?

(Verse)
And every morning when I wake up I pray for you
And then I pray for me that soon you’ll see
How love can be, our love will set you free.
And what it’s gonna be, I see the beauty in your eyes.

(Chorus)
Tell me who made you the center of the universe?
Who made you the center of the universe?
Who made you the center of the universe?
Who made you the center of the universe?

(Verse)
I will never be what you want and that’s alright,
Cause my skin ain’t light and my body ain’t tight.
I will never be what you want and that’s alright,
Cause my skin ain’t light and that’s alright.

(Chorus)
Tell me who made you the center of the universe?
Who made you the center of the universe?
Who made you the center of the universe?
Who made you the center of the universe?