A Concert Review
March 13, 1997
|A Review by
Just let me start off by saying all you people who jetted before the
encore… Boy did you miss something special!!! We'll come back to
Is that a knife in your pocket or an ugly shirt?
Ms. Crow graced Chicago's Riviera Theater on a cold rainy March
night. I know it was cold and it was rainy because I had to wait
outside in the elements as the Riviera's security took the time to
pat down each guest. As I froze my ass off waiting to get felt up I
noticed the T-shirt booth. Yuck! I can't believe people actually
bought the ugly merchandise offered by SC's promoters. From the $25
hat with cheesy green graphic to the $30 long sleeved hooded shirt
with the same bad logo I couldn't somebody actually approved these
Well when I finally got felt up and past all the ugly
merchandise, I was surprised to see the turn out for the show, not
because this was the most packed I've ever seen the Riviera but
because of the broad spectrum of people. There were kids as young as
6, bikers, dopers, yuppies, confused married suburbanites, and
lesbians. I never imagined that Ms. Crow had suck broad appeal (no
lesbian pun intended). OOPS… I left out one group of people. After
sharing my thoughts about the audience with the Dude On The Right he
added to it by saying "Yeah, and there's no fat people here
either." How rude of him to make fun of the slenderly
challenged. I say all you lard asses out there send him some hate
On with the show…
Opening for Sheryl this night would be the up and coming alternative
band Dishwalla. I thought this would be a fair mix and I was
surprised when the audience gave them an overwhelming welcome to
Chicago. I never knew they were so big here. During their 40ish
minute set the band showed some stage personality but I wouldn't
call it a commanding presence. That is to say they need to work on
it before they could ever think of headlining a large stage of their
own. After they sang their hit "Counting Blue Cars" the
lead singer shared a story with the crowd that I'll attempt to
recreate for you now. It went something like this:
So after a show this kid comes up to me and asks "is God
male or Female?"
"Don't know. Probably a little of both" I replied
"Is God black or white?"
"Is God Gay or Strait?"
"Is God Michael Jackson?"
Well I, along with the entire crowd, laughed at the joke and enjoyed
the rest of Dishwalla's performance. Because their set was tight,
the audience loved them, and they showed some personality I give
Dishwalla's performance TWO BIG THUMBS UP!
When I was time for Ms. Crow to hit the stage she did, in my
opinion, a real smart thing. Sheryl opened her set with her current
hit "If It makes You Happy." What better way to instill
excitement in a crowd than to start them off with a song they knew
and loved. This "smart set" trend continued throughout the
night. Sheryl would do a hit then three to four lesser known tunes
and then another hit. By doing this she kept the attention of the
audience the entire night. During some of those "in-between
hits" songs Sheryl would dance and spin around the stage like a
little girl playing lip-synch in her bedroom as nobody watched. My
point? She really looked like she was enjoying herself. She was
enjoying herself so much that she felt confident enough to take a
shot at the HUGE Wal-Mart Corporation before singing the song that
got her latest album banned at their stores. You go girl!
Two songs later I had a horrible Hee-Haw flash back when SC's
percussionists dawned a wash board on his stomach for a song. I
don't know the name of the song but I was scared by the fact that I
liked it. Earlier in the night some other things struck me funny.
For example, thoughts of Joan Osborne raced through my head as
Sheryl sang "Run Baby." Not only because both women have
beautiful voices with great range but also because they seem to be
sharing the same hair stylist. Also, Sheryl, well my editor won't
let me write what I really want to, but let's just say she looks
good in tight pants. Hey, don't ask me where these weird thoughts
come from. They just come to me.
About an hour and twenty minutes after she started, Sheryl sang
what I'll call the "I Shall Believe" song and thanked her
audience as she left the stage. I knew, as did most people, that
there would be an encore set. None the less quite a few people left.
Boy did you assholes miss out!!!
What a cool surprise!
There is no doubt in my mind that for those who stuck around were
treated to the best encore set that I have ever witnessed! Sheryl
Crow was in what could best be called the singing "zone."
When she blew a line in "Strong Enough to be My Man" she
just lightly chuckled and went on like a true pro. Then she invited
The Wallflower's (who would play the Riviera the next night)
keyboardist and lead singer to join her is what seemed to me a
semi-unrehearsed jam set. Sheryl and Jacob Dylan shared a mic as
they covered a slowed country-esk version of the Beatles'
"She's Got A Ticket To Ride." I loved it and so did all
those who stayed. I think some of the kiddies were lost about the
song but they were captivated by the good looks of the young Mr.
Dylan. The jam session continued with covers of "Not Fade
Away" that had people dancing, "Pale Blue Eyes" that
had lovers kissing, and "The Weight" ended it all. I could
have stayed all night and I'm sure Sheryl, her band, and The
Wallflowers would have liked to play some more too, but the night
unfortunately did come to an end. Walking out everyone was buzzing
about how great the show was. I too agree. The encore set was worth
the price of admission alone.
I, Stu Gotz, with out a doubt, bestow upon Sheryl Crow and her
band my highest rating for a live musical performance. That's right…
Two HUGE Thumbs Up with an extra POPPING Appendage. 'Nuff