Michaela’s Review of Janelle Monáe LIVE @ Shepherd’s Bush Empire

7 Dec

Hey!

It’s 6 minutes after midnight…and there are a few things I should be doing before I go to bed; I need to write a blog on the gigs I had in Rotterdam (I WILL get to that tomorrow)..I need to call my producer to arrange my next studio session, use my exfoliating wipes and take my makeup off, find my headscarf to wrap my hair, think of more ways to sort out this life of mine that seems to be evermore creatively spiralling (…out of control). But there is something I need to blog about first…it’s Janelle Monáe.

I went to see her in concert tonight at Shepherd’s Bush Empire

We arrived at 7pm…queued up and got to the front nice and quickly ‘coz Amber/Phresh Mentality (good friend/poet) had booked us these fast track tickety thingies, we went inside, it was already getting packed up, but  Amber is a pro at getting to the very front of every concert so I followed her like a child as she led me onwards. It was tight but she managed to get a space front row but I didn’t! The guy  who was privileged enough to be in front of me said ‘are you trying to push into the front?’ I said ‘Yes I am, and I think it could work, don’t you?’ He made space for me, we then made a temporary friendship that lasted till the end of the concert, his name was Saul.

I found myself actually EXCITED..the only other concert (headlined by an American) I’d ever experienced was my awkward 2 hours with Mario at Indigo2 earlier this year..and well…if you wanna know what I thought about that read my blog about it (just type Mario in the search box). When I watched the girls scream and throw their belts, I thought ‘how distasteful’…but guess what? I screamed..I screamed before Janelle even got on the frigging stage…and when she got on I screamed again…(I doubt I would have thrown my belt, but I wasn’t wearing one so I can’t say for sure! 😉

LISTEN, I HAVE TO TELL YOU, IF YOU DON’T KNOW ABOUT JANELLE MONÁE, PLEASE FIND HER ON ITUNES, YOUTUBE, ANYTHING, BECAUSE HER MUSIC IS, it just IS. THAT NIGHT, AS ON HER ALBUM, HER VOICE WAS CLEAN, POWERFUL, CONTROLLED, AND BREATHTAKING, IN FACT, RARELY DO YOU MEET ARTISTS WHO SOUND BETTER LIVE; SHE’S ONE OF THOSE ARTISTS. SHE’S NOT AFRAID OF THE STAGE, SHE PERFORMS WITH HER BODY SOUL AND MIND, AND DURING THE COURSE OF HER HOUR ON STAGE, MY RESPECT FOR HER AS AN ARTIST TRIPLED.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

I’ve never been anyone’s ‘fan’ in my life…and I don’t know if I’m Janelle’s ‘fan’ when I think about it; but what I am is an admirer of her career development, her songwriting skills and her talent. Her inhibition, her resilience to conform to what the media deems as ‘successful artists’, and her seemingly small barrier between herself and her audience is something that I see in myself…the only difference is that when I sing I sound like I have a London sewer rat in my throat..small factor LOL

Watching any artist perform is a revealing thing; I myself have recited poetry and midway through broke down in tears (do not compare me to Katie from X Factor please); however much you try to control your set; with thrills and trills and shiny sparkly things, you standing on stage will reveal something about you beyond your control.

I felt like when I watched Janelle I saw a person who is fighting a tedious war to get her music heard, every artist has a glass ceiling; they come to a point where their music can’t seem to reach enough people and the causes of that struggle always seem to be unjust; Janelle’s glass ceiling seems to be lower than her female counterparts like Lady Gaga, Beyonce blah blah blah. It makes no sense to me, yet it makes perfect sense: Janelle’s music has substance, even when she’s talking what appears to be complete gibberish (Neon Gumbo for example)…there is an honesty in her music…the media only has time for that kind of truth to an extent.

I’ve been listening to her music non-stop for the last week; it was my companion when I flew to Rotterdam to perform out there, and I couldn’t get bored if I tried…

I’d estimate that about 2% of my persons actually wants to be her; this is the part of me I have to tame; as much as I love her stuff…her stuff is not my stuff – I have to conciously make sure I’m not being over-influenced by her ‘coz I’m recording my new album at the moment!

Please buy her album here

So here’s the part of the blog that I didn’t wanna write…

After the show it popped into my head that I should write her a note; I won’t tell you what it said, but it was one of those things that in my head was really serious but once it journeyed to paper read like nonsense; I gave it to her drummer, he promised he’d give it to her..and whether he did or didn’t I don’t care, ‘coz for the first time I didn’t chicken out of it..I wrote the note! And I wasn’t afraid of the rejection..that’s a big step for me…I can’t tell you how great I feel for that lol.

But now it’s back to reality for me; it’s all well and good to watch and admire Janelle but I have an album to make of my own: I have ZERO contacts, no hook ups, hand me downs or leg ups in this industry, I’m doing it all D.I.Y…but you know what? The law of reaping and sowing is this; you put in hard work; you get back good stuff, so I’m already successful, I’m already an achiever!

If you despise the day of small beginnings, their roots will give birth to trees that are so tall they’ll tower over your house, and then birds will perch on their twigs and poo all over your roof and your head. I embrace my small beginning, but if I really do want my words to reach the masses I need to stop writing this blog and get back in the studio (in’t that right, ProducerWez?).

Love ya

Michaela

 

JANELLE’S UK TOUR DATES 2011
February
Thursday 24th, O2 Academy, Bristol
Friday 25th, HMV Institute, Birmingham
Saturday 26th, O2 ABC, Glasgow
Monday 28th, Academy, Manchester
March
Tuesday 1st, The Roundhouse, London
Advertisements

4 Responses to “Michaela’s Review of Janelle Monáe LIVE @ Shepherd’s Bush Empire”

  1. J.L.M December 12, 2010 at 8:43 pm #

    Read this- http://vigilantcitizen.com/?p=5208

    I’m not too sure about Janelle now 😦

  2. Mr SoSuave December 8, 2010 at 11:53 pm #

    Saw her in Manchester the following day. She was without a doubt sensational.

  3. Maryam Show December 7, 2010 at 1:07 pm #

    Really makes u feel u should of been there- I like this!!! JM is dark horse someone I over looked but have now have become a fan yeaaaahhhhhh great writing M!!!!

  4. SPIRIT December 7, 2010 at 12:00 pm #

    Now there is yet another thing you do well – Write reviews. AWESOME!

    QUOTE OF THE DAY – “If you despise the day of small beginnings, their roots will give birth to trees that are so tall they’ll tower over your house, and then birds will perch on their twigs and poo all over your roof and your head.” – Michaela the Poet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: