Melissa Etheridge Review London – 27.04.15
There has never been any secret that the founders of RainbowBiz have been long time fans of musician and vocalist Melissa Etheridge. So imagine our excitement when we found out that Melissa would be playing in London this year. Of course we planned a few days around the gig as we don’t have a holiday break very often. We booked a budget hotel, and got a great deal with Virgin Trains and left North Wales full of anticipation. If you have never heard songs by Melissa Etheridge, her live performances are always outstanding. Melissa is highly committed to giving her all at live shows. After releasing her most recent album “This is M.E” earlier this year, the Melissa Etheridge solo concert was never going to disappoint.
We arrived at the venue an hour or so before the start of the show. The Shepherd’s Bush Empire is a stunning building, an old theatre with stained glass and beautiful décor. A truly intimate place for any concert, but especially so when the star of the show is so in touch with her audience. This was a “Solo Tour”, which means (obviously) that there was only Melissa on stage with a huge selection of her guitars, pedals, drums and a piano.
Melissa Etheridge is an absolute joy to watch live, and has so much fun on stage, building each track starting with drum loops, acoustic and electric guitars and vocals, she is exceptionally talented and versatile. With a voice to rival Janis Joplin in her prime, Melissa filled the Shepherd’s Bush Empire with her mix of rock, blues and soul from the heart.
She clearly felt at ease with her audience as she chatted about her Radio 2 interview with Sir Terry Wogan the day before with Lucy Spraggan and went on to joke that she used to be intimidated by the British accent. This made a few giggle as we always thought of Melissa as being pretty feisty. You can hear the full interview here.
The Set List
Opening with “Chrome Plated Heart”, then on to the more rockier “I’m the only one” and “Come to my window” Melissa’s vocals were raw and evocative throughout. New songs from the album included the bluesy “Ain’t That Bad” and “Monster”, anthems like “Take My Number”, “Like a Preacher” went down really well and the very personal “Who are you waiting for” which was written by Melissa as part of her vows for her wedding last year to her best friend and partner in life, Linda Wallem. Melissa even managed to fit in “Gently we row” the beautiful song from “Fearless Love” written for her daughter after a fan in the audience held up a hand written request for her to sing it. Iconic “Like the Way I do” from 1988, possibly her most famous song was saved until last, everyone was dancing and singing along. The atmosphere was electric, Melissa was on top form and clearly thrives on live performances. We can’t wait to see her again!
If you have never experienced Melissa Etheridge before, she is a passionate blend of American rock and blues with flavours of Janis Joplin, Bob Dylan, Robert Plant and even Bruce Springsteen, but with an unique magical ability to lure audiences deep inside her soul. You will have a chance to see her in Europe in July as more tour dates have been released here.
From a personal point of view it was fantastic to meet some of Melissa’s fans, Anita-Jo who recognized us from Twitter as the girls from “RainbowBiz”, she had flown in from New York especially for “This Is M.E”. We loved meeting Frank Cverna, Wolfgang from Germany, Bodil and Tanya from Denmark and Nikki Lamborn, Been and the “Never The Bride” team from the UK.
Links and more information for Melissa Etheridge