Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings | The Wiltern | 3/25/14


Sharon Jones. My, my, my … that woman is a force of nature.

I’m a big fan of the classic R&B sound. There are a good number of male recording artists that I follow (i.e. Charles Bradley, Lee Fields, etc.), but there really is only one female R&B artist that really knocks it out of the park for me, and that’s Sharon Jones.

In June of 2013, when I heard that the release of her album “Give The People What They Want” was going to be delayed because she had been diagnosed with Stage II pancreatic cancer, my heart broke. Though I didn’t know her on a personal level, I can say that her fun and funky album “100 Days, 100 Nights” (released late 2007) helped relieve a lot of stress I was dealing with at the time. I mean, “Be Easy”, with the hook “Oh, just be easy, baby/ That girl will come a runnin’ to you/ If you just be easy, baby/ Ah, she’ll be easy too”, has 32 plays registered on my iTunes. Though “she” never came runnin’ to me, that song still stands out as a pretty particular part of my life.

When I had read that she beat the cancer that threatened her life, I was relieved. When I heard she was touring to support the album, I went out and bought a ticket.

After having the band warm the crowd up for 15-20 minutes, the indomitable Ms. Sharon Jones grooved onto the stage to the Dap-Kings big band sound, her head shaved and her face beaming. The crowd went wild. Clearly, everybody was as excited to see her grace the stage as I was.

It was my first time seeing her perform live, and it was every bit as funky, and soulful as her albums. If she had had it difficult recovering after her chemotherapy, you would have never guessed it. Her voice was as powerful as it was on her albums, and her stage presence was overwhelmingly energetic, even giving the audience a little lesson in dance history as she demonstrated every “old-school” dance in the book from The Jerk to The Twist. Towards the end of her set, she even allowed fans, who were lucky enough to score bracelets to the orchestra pit, a chance to dance on stage with her.

Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings gave it everything they got, and it truly blew mind. If you are lucky enough to see them perform live, I guarantee your mind will be blown too.

Setlist (From the OC Register)

  1. The Reason (instrumental)
  2. Mellomatic (instrumental)
  3. Wouldn’t You Rather (instrumental)
  4. Intro for Jones
  5. If You Call
  6. Without a Heart
  7. Give It Back
  8. Money
  9. When You Love Me
  10. Tell Me
  11. When I Come Home
  12. Let Them Knock
  13. Not Gonna Cry
  14. This Land Is Your Land (Woody Guthrie Cover)
  15. Keep On Looking
  16. The Game Gets Old
  17. Mama Don’t Like My Man
  18. Still Be True
  19. Broken Hearted Man
  20. Window Shopping
  21. Better Things
  22. She Ain’t a Child No More
  23. I Learned the Hard Way


  1. Reach Out (instrumental)
  2. 100 Days, 100 Nights

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