This past Sunday in the middle of all the cookouts and clubbing I was able to catch the Lights Out Tour featuring Kelly Rowland and The Dream. I was more interested in staring at Kelly but The Dream has plenty of hits I was interested in hearing.
The show started around 8:30 pm as a male walked through the curtains singing. At first everyone thought it was The Dream then realized it was not. It was August Alsina, an up and coming singer from Atlanta. I hadn’t heard the name before but his single I Luv This Shit was familiar and got the crowd into it. He followed that up with a mash-up of Bandz and another song. It was a good 15 minute set; the mash-up was a great idea. The only thing he should have done was say his name; nobody introduced him and he wasn’t on the bill, has to promote himself.
After waiting for about 20 minutes a band sets up and starts testing out their instruments and then the lights go dark. The Dream walks out wearing a shiny champion style varsity jacket over a knee-length button up shirt with only the top button buttoned and leather pants. He walks to a gold mic and starts signing Umbrella while holding a big black umbrella. The song ends and he throws the open umbrella into the crowd.
The lights come up and the band begins to play Dope Bitch. Dope Bitch was followed by a few old songs; Shawty Is A 10, Fast Car and Nikki.
Then, The Dream performed his version of Jodeci’s Come And Talk To Me. The crowd did most of the singing after he got it started.
Next, The Dream did the title track off his new album IV Play. This was followed by a string of older songs; Falsetto, My Love and I Luv Your Girl. Then he did a new song off the album but he didn’t say the name of it. It was slower, like a ballad and people did not seem to be feeling it.
He came back with Fancy and followed it up with Right Side Of Your Brain and Ditch That. Then he closed with Rockin’ That Thang.
His set was good, had energy and played the crowd well. It was far from a great display of singing but only a few of the songs required that. The crowd helped him perform a lot of the songs, especially the ones from the Love/Hate album. He got hype and did some awkward dancing that seemed to entertain the crowd. He singled out females throughout the venue to sing to and interact with. He used the band well and they were really hype and helped to get crowd participation up. I would not go to see The Dream as a headliner but in this role it was worth it and I enjoyed it.
A short time after The Dream left the stage a shadow image of Kelly Rowland’s new album cover appeared on the curtain. A few minutes later the same band The Dream used came back out and took their places.
Kelly comes out wearing a one piece bathing suit with a leather jacket and cuffed denim shorts singing Keep It Between Us. This was followed by her singing the hooks and her verses from Representin, Ice, Neva End (remix) and Dilemma. At the end of Dilemma she let one of the back up singers get a solo while she danced and took her jacket off to show her beautiful body off even more.
Then, after repeatedly asking for water from the stage crew, she asked if it was okay if she did some new stuff and the crowd cheered in approval. She then performed Street Life, a different type of sound that I wasn’t expecting but it was really enjoyed by the crowd. The song features Pusha T but she didn’t even play a snippet of his verse. The next new song was called, This Is Love. This Is Love is ballad, slow but really powerful. It also captivated the audience. While not a party record I think people who enjoy classic R&B will enjoy it.
Next she sped things back up and performed Lay It On Me but followed it up with Bad Habits. The crowd, full of women, sang along sounding like they were relating to the song to a disturbing degree. Then she did another new song but did not say the name of it. The song was of the same subject and kind of slow but at the end she let the guitar player go in and he even played the guitar with his tongue/face, it was pretty dope.
Kelly then began to talk about a great guy and a great artist who she is so happy she was able to meet and work with. The Dream came back out and they performed a new song off The Dream’s new album, IV Play. The song is called Where Have You Been; it’s a duet where The Dream and Kelly have a great back and forth. While Kelly is of course the stronger vocalist, The Dream held his own and this was a great performance they both really got into.
Kelly thanked The Dream and again said how grateful she was of him and that she loved him quickly followed by “like a brother before y’all start the rumors.” She then talked about how he helped her to write “the best song of her career” while grabbing a stool and sitting center stage in front of the mic. “Y’all ready for this Dirty Laundry?” The crowd cheered as Kelly went on to perform the emotional song that talks about her abusive relationship and being jealous of Beyonce. She was so into it she started to cry and get a little off-key so she stopped the song to wipe her eyes, gather herself and sing the last refrain. It really showed how honest and true the song is. The crowd cheered to support her through it.
Kelly laughed and tried to put on a happy face and asked if there were any Destiny’s Child fans out there as she went through a medley of old song including Jumpin’ Jumpin’, Survivor, Soldier and Cater 2 U. She then said “but sometimes I like to get catered to” and went into the hit Kisses Down Low followed by Motivation. She had two strong ass dudes on stage dancing off and on throughout her set but they really got their shine at the end interacting with Kelly and the crowd while dancing with no shirts on. The ladies seemed to enjoy it.
Kelly then went around and introduced the members of the band, her back up singers and dancers individually. I always like when artist do this; let other people who helped you put on a good show get some shine. She closed with Like This and thanked the crowd for coming out and letting her be emotional.
I thought the show was great, a lot of different elements that are not usually present a small venues. I think everything from Kelly and The Dream’s outfit to the song order and band were well thought out and together unlike some shows where the artist act like they don’t even know each other or something. Kelly was sometimes drowned out by the instruments but was really active and interacted with the crowd well. She even responded to a few people yelling they loved her and that she looked fine as hell. She laughed a lot early in the show and even admitted she need to stop because she was having too much fun. You could tell she was really enjoying it. I would definitely go see Kelly Rowland again.
Were you at the show? What did you think? Let me know in the comments section.