July 23 Atlantic City NJ Idols Show
Check out a new recap of the Rochester show from TayTorTot.
OK, a bit of a comparative recap of the Philly and AC shows… Both were thoroughly enjoyable and I had a blast.. As stated in the Philly recap the weather was atrocious.. probably the worst storms we’ve had in that area for quite a while. But, I left in plenty of time to get to the venue, check out the buses (it was still teeming), stop at the bar upstairs and have a drink and chat with a few visitors. One set of grandparents had driven from Columbus, Ohio with their grandson and great grandmom to this show because they couldn’t get 5 seats together anywhere in Ohio – their 7 yr old grandson (Taylor fan) informed me he still had the wedgie to prove it..
The crowd in Philly was big.. at 6:45 I was surprised to see the # of empty seats, but by 6:55 (and for the next 15 minutes) they kept streaming in… so the show started a bit late.. the acts are all pretty much the same, and now my personal opinion follows..
Everyone seemed to be in good voice tonight (probably all a bit better than on Sunday night), the crowd was appreciative of everyone.. Mandisa, Lisa Paris and Ace did the usual numbers, and all were in excellent shape.. I’m sure fans of these performers have done their recaps.. I think maybe Ace got a crowd response as big as Chris… this was a heavy teen girl audience (although lots of adults – some without kids along) and they love them some Ace.. By the way, Ace is cultivating his fan base by always, and I mean always being available for autographs.. smart boy.
Bucky and Kelly were lots and lots of fun and their duet was totally cute.. They were both in very good voice both nights.
Break.. and then comes Chris.. his voice was in good shape tonight and he was loud – I have to mention here that the acoustics in the Wachovia Center are not good at all and they just went downhill from there – honestly, Chris is not my cup of tea, and I firmly believe that if you are going to cover a song it had better be really good (unless your at a bar singing karaoke).. He opened with Whole Lotta Love, and I’ve seen Zeppelin live many, many years ago and this didn’t cut it for me.. but the crowd loved it.. not being a Chris fan, I don’t remember the exact titles of all he did, but he was just what his fans wanted..
Elliott, Elliott, man can that boy sing… he said he had a huge contingent of family in the audience tonight (I think he said half the crowd)ha, ha.. He loves being there and it shows.. I was in club box seats for this and I decided to keep an eye on the audience for my report – they get quieter when Elliott sings.. not because they are bored, but I think because they really want to hear him.. He bounces back and forth on stage and sorry people, I’m a mom of sons, and I think he is just plain cute and I love, love his voice.
The group songs by the guys and girls are both good, the boys is better, and I have to say that after all the hype I was disappointed, it was what I expected from them, nothing more. Oh, that reminds me, Chris and Elliott’s duet.. very, very good.. I think Elliott outsung Chris tonight, though.
Taylor. Taylor, Taylor, Taylor… his response tonight – HUGE.. Ace’s was really loud, Chris’s was reeallly loud.. Taylor’s was deafening and for the first time tonight, everyone got up and stayed up… All songs tonight were excellent – maybe a bit rushed, but man… worth every penny you pay and more. I was glad to see that, unlike I’d heard in the most recent reviews, he didn’t seem to be having fun.. he actually looked like he was enjoying himself.. Hollywood Nights was excellent, DLMD was outstanding… the man knows how to perform and it was appreciated throughout the building… he took us to church and worked it out the entire set.. oh, and this band was great as has been reported.. TITTS.. amazing.. the crowd got nuts on this one and his harp.. oh my gawd! We had the best time and I am having fun just writing this up and remembering..
Now, on to Atlantic City… What is it with you people who can’t get to a concert or an appointment on time… No excuse here – the weather was fine, but again, at 10 after 7 people are still streaming into the place.. We were directly in front of the stage on the floor (back on the first riser section – so we could see above the front row crowds) and the rest of our row (or course the inside seats) not only arrived after the show started, they got up and went for beer, bathroom, beer, food during the course of the next 2 hours (and these girls could have waited a while to feed)if you know what I mean..
Anyway, problems tonight.. Mandisa and Ace both did great tonight – and tonight Ace definitely had as loud a reception as Chris.. Mandisa got a huge reception – and why not – the lady can belt.. Their duet was still good, but not as good as last night.. I think Lisa was better on Saturday, too, but she didn’t hold back one bit, and the crowd enjoyed her.. maybe a bit too down tempo to soon in the show.. Paris and Lisa did better tonight with Waterfalls, not that last night wasn’t good – this was just a bit better..
Poor Princess P – at just about the last few bars of her set – silence… Paris, band, jumbotrons – all dead.. and so we sat.. waiting to see what was up – no storm, not a power failure in the building, because the lighting was still on, just the set went down… so all you heard for the next 5-10 minutes was crowd noise and, oh yeah.. the upper levels amused themselves by doing the wave, ok they were the only entertainment for a bit (of course the chow hounds down the lane decided it was a good time to go fuel up again).. Some teasing with the band instruments, the jumbotrons go up and down the links are being reset and then – magic.. the instruments come back – the center jumbotron is back and Bucky is coming out thru the smoke – that never stopped..
He immediately gets moving, loping back and forth across the stage and using that rough growl to get people back into the set. He sounds better tonight, too, and he has a very participative audience on Drift Away. Kellie joins him and changed her set up a bit tonight – she has long hair tonight (short in Philly), and also seems to be in better voice.. the kids loved her duet with Bucky – heck they loved Kellie – believe it or not they roared when she came onstage.. Besides, you have to be really hard hearted not to give her the benefit of the doubt and just enjoy what she does.. Eyes don’t lie and she seems really, really appreciative to be on that stage.. Hell, all of them do, and they don’t mind telling their fans over and over just how much they do appreciate them… rather refreshing..
Oh, one note here – what is with Chris and Ace asking people to hold up their cell phones (Chris wants lighters too – doesn’t he know you can’t light up in Jersey buildings), heh, sorry.. I don’t know why, but it feels like a Cingular plug to me or something – but then I come from a time that if you held up fire at a concert, someone actually lit something..
OK, breaktime… and our little club in the row is off for something (bathrooms, beer, who knows).. 2nd Half starts.. I’ll get this out of the way here.. duets and group numbers were all good again tonight – once again, I think Elliott was on top of his game in that duet, and once again it was not more than I expected..
Chris gets a huge welcome when he comes out on stage and the girls are screaming at the top of their lungs – very high pitched screams I might add.. I was able to see the audience from a different perspective tonight, since I watched from above on Saturday and from the floor on Sunday… once again, the crowd absolutely loved Ace and Chris – and those girls love, love, love Kellie… but during the course of the show, their were only pockets of people here and there on their feet during the performances.. and I do have to add, the Wachovia Center seats many, many more people than AC Boardwalk Hall, but the crowd in here is just about as loud.. I think my hearing returned tonight in about 3-4 minutes as opposed to 5 minutes – not complaining – had a blast – just a note..
Chris was in pretty good voice again tonight, I don’t want his fans to think I’m bashing, I’ve just witnessed better… maybe when Chris does some of his own music I’ll change my mind.. I think he has a great voice, I’d just prefer he change it up a bit.. his fans love him and he rocked – although he got a bit strained during the last song, he pulled it off to the crowds pleasure.
Now Elliott.. cute, cute, cute.. he just works his way back and forth, back and forth, but again, that boy can sing! He looked like he was having fun – waved and said Hi to his Mom who was in the audience again tonight. She must be bursting with pride every time she sees him perform – and well she should be. Personally, I’m glad he does a long version of Moody’s… I love that song – and he does it more than justice..
Oh.. ‘scuse me.. the lane girls are again on the move.. I’m grateful I’m sitting on the aisle tonight since I don’t block anyone’s view everytime I have to get out of my seat for them.. why can’t they just send one of them out for supplies – must they travel in a pack?? Things are getting tense in the hall.. you can feel people waiting..
And he’s on.. out comes Taylor and up comes the crowd – he does a shorter set tonight than last night – I’ll tell you why later – but it is everybit as powerful, and I think his first two numbers are even better than last night.. Hollywood nights is perfect. He just gets into it and goes to town.. When he is done, he says something like “I like Seeger”.. with a really, goofy, sincere look on his face – it was hard to hear because of the crowd, but anyone who knows that music, knew Taylor really, really liked doing it.. Again, his Don’t Let Me Down vocals seemed better tonight.. their was a less manic side to tonight’s performance – me I don’t care both are fine – just a little bit different, but it’s the flavor he imparts to what he does that sets his tone or whatever.. (or maybe it’s the beach air – always helped our kids relax and sleep better) DIMYP – brought cheers, no other way to describe it, from the audience – as well as group participation.. I think it was louder tonight than last night.. the crowd loved it and cheered and cheered.. He changed this up quite a bit from last night and kept in enough of his style and big notes to please the crowd, but if you’ve seen him do this a number of times, you knew he was holding back.. I thought maybe he was holding back a bit, but the crowd was completely satisfied when he finished. That was the end of his set, and I was sad and surprised that he cut it short tonight..
Of course they had the close of the show, screaming and foot stomping until the band came back out and then Taylor comes out for TITTS – and he brought everyone back up to their feet… If they were sitting before this number, they weren’t now.. I will say here, at least 1/2 of the group got roaring receptions and appreciation after their individual sets (the guys mostly – and Kellie).. at both shows – but regardless of where I was sitting the reception for Taylor was way, way loud and sustained.. I failed to mention before that neither in the Club box seats nor on the floor was I able to hear anymore than the first few bars of JHR because of the crowd response. Taylor’s dancing was more subdued tonight, but I think maybe he saved what he could to put into his playing and vocals.. His harp both nights was “chilling” he makes you scream, you can’t help it… Rock me baby!!! His tambourine sets anyone remaining to stomping..
The crowd in AC was probably much closer to 50/50 adults/kids… There were a couple older gentlemen sitting across the aisle from me who just sat and listened nicely all night.. 1/2 way thru Takin’ It, they were rocking away – very close to head bangin’ – if you know what I mean.. they were 19 again… it is a wonderful feeling.. Everything about Taylor seemed a bit more subdued tonight – but that took nothing away from his performance if you are a Taylor music fan.. He can put just as much emotion into a funky tune as he can to one everybody wants to rock to.. or grind to, as we used to say.. The show close was same as night before, except that Taylor did not do as much of the lead.. my disappointment… Sunday night’s Livin in America vocals by all was a lot better… it was a bit flat (not tone wise, more emotion wise) last night, but for those in the crowd who weren’t doing a comparison – they loved it..
So, we walked out to the Boardwalk and sat in the cool summer night air and watched the seagulls circle the towers of the AC casinos… took a half hour to 40 minutes to get out of the parking lot, but… as I pulled up to the intersection traffic light, this cop stops me – so they can let all the Idol tour buses come out… lucky me – 5 minutes sooner or later and I would have missed them… your American Idols sat in those buses and smilingly waved out the windows to those standing on the corners waiting for them and those sitting in their cars.. this is a very talented group of young people and I look forward to their music for a long time.
OK, this bit of news/gossip… Ace always stops to sign autographs and talk with fans… he told one of the Mother’s at the show last night – did I mention that there were a lot of Mom’s at this concert in AC – no children, no husbands – just themselves out to shake it out a bit.. anyway, when asked if Taylor would be out, Ace says… “they keep Taylor so busy, he doesn’t have time for anything.. and he’s had a fever of 102 for the past 2 days”.. That having been said… does this mean that I haven’t seen Taylor at his peak? Can he possibly entertain me more? I don’t see how, but I’m willing to try again, just to make sure…
OH, did anyone notice I didn’t mention McPhee… well, no one else did either. No mention at all – not by other idols – not my concert promoters and not by fans.. The only people I saw with anything Katherine were little girls – and judging from the crowd and the chatter around the arena – no one missed her… Even the little girls wearing her T-shirts were skipping and laughing on the way out.. This does not bode well for holding onto her fanbase.. You know how it is with children “out of sight – out of mind” and that seems to be the case.. And surprising to me, there were many people who didn’t know she wasn’t performing as we sat there waiting for the show to start.. parents were not happy having to tell their kids that were Katherine fans… in fact, one of the Mom’s that knew, had not mentioned it to her daughter at all – hoping she’d enjoy her second favorite Kellie enough not to notice.
Anyway… I know I’ve forgotten some things – but what I won’t forget is that these kids kept me thoroughly entertained for 2 hours and this show was well worth the price of admission. It may sound stupid, but as I sat and watched them perform, I could hear myself thinking “good girl”, or “atta boy”.. I took great pleasure in their accomplishment and wanted each and every one of them to make their fans very, very happy they came… I think they succeeded! Oh, and if I didn’t mention it before.. the sound at the Boardwalk Hall was much better than at the Wachovia Center, maybe it’s those old, high arched ceilings. Beautiful building.
Well I didn’t get there early enough to have a chance to meet Ace, but just seeing him in concert was enough for me. I would’ve passed out if I came in contact with him! Our seats were pretty good, first row on the side. The usher right in front of us was such a cool guy. For anyone going to later concerts, be nice to the staff! They were really wonderful and tried to help us with anything they could.
Mandisa sounded awesome as usual, but I have to say I was a little distracted by the anticipation of Ace. Her voice is so powerful! She looked beautiful as usual, and her “I’m Every Woman” got the place dancing right away.
When ACE came out, I have never felt happier. The place went NUTS. I was so proud of him. Can you tell I’m a big fan? Everyone around me stood up, which was fun to see. He looked amazing, and sounded even better. The taking off the jacket in Father Figure, the jump in “Harder to Breathe”, and the dancing in the encore song all received HUGE screams. If he hooks up with the right people in his future, I don’t see how anyone can stop him.
Lisa Tucker REALLY impressed me. She was my favorite behind Ace and Chris last night. If she sang more songs to showcase that beautiful voice of hers she would’ve been around MUCH longer. She looked adorable and was very sweet onstage. She’s very cute. “Your Song” was beautifully done.
Paris lost the end of her last song due to technical difficulties, but kept on going like a little pro. She was very fun and energetic, just not really my thing. Her duet with Lisa was very cute though.
People took a little break while the sound system got worked out, and then Bucky came on to big screams. He had the entire place singing along to “Drift Away” so he let us sing it for awhile. He was very sweet and had a fun set. He threw in some microphone throws and was running all over the stairs. He, Ace and Taylor seemed to be the most energetic.
Kellie came out to duet with him and they wer e very cute. I’m a country fan, so I enjoyed it. A country “Grease” was a little bit funny though. During the intermission, everyone was waiting for Chris. Sure enough, he kicked off the second half of the show with screams as loud as for Ace. They were some fan favorites for sure.
Chris looked gorgeous and definitely has the whole “rock star” thing down. Everyone just seemed mesmerized, his command of the stage is absolutely brilliant. The tight black t-shirt really worked for him! His version of “Renegade” was my favorite and everyone in the place was singing along. It was really fun. He brought sweet Elliott out to sing Nickelback’s “Savin’ Me.” I don’t really like that song, but I did last night! Their version was much better than the original.
Elliott looked so excited to be onstage. Chris left to huge applause and Elliott began his set. He was fun, worked the stage better than he did on AI, and his voice is always amazing. He said his Mom was in the audience, and she should be extremely proud!
Taylor came down the stairs through the audience to the side of us, so I got to see him from maybe 20 feet away. That was very cool. He got everyone dancing right away. He, Chris and Ace got the loudest applause but it was very generous for everyone. He ROCKED on the harmonica. I’m not even a Taylor fan, but I was dancing during that. He had this old lady next to us playing air guitar, which was pretty much the funniest thing ever. Taylor really worked the stage and the whole crowd.
Ace, Chris, Bucky and Elliott singing “Patience” was great. Ace and Chris rocking out at the end had the entire place on their feet. That short part was the highlight of the night for me! The girls did a cute medley like on the finale, but I really did miss Katharine. She would have been a great transition between Elliott and Taylor. It was a whole lotta “soul” but there was no diva in the second half. Her return will make the show even better.
The “Living in America” encore was great, Ace danced a little bit and got some big screams. He threw beanies and he and Chris were running around together. They all seem to just be having the time of their lives.
I talked to some people next to us who met them all before the show. They were new fans of Ace, Chris and Bucky. They said all three were very sweet to them and signed autographs. All in all, it was a great show and I hope to see another one when Kat rejoins the tour. Even if I wasn’t a fan of all of them before, I would consider buying an album from any of the ten. They all seem so thankful to be where they are and they all gave awesome performances.