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Posts tagged ‘blake shelton’

The Triumphant Return of Gwen Stefani

Gwen Stefani in Concert
Saturday, October 15, 2016
The Forum

This is What the Truth Feels Like Tour 2016

Special guest: Eve

Songs performed: Red Flag, Wind It Up, Baby Don’t Lie, Obsessed, Where Would I Be?, Cool, Make Me Like You, Underneath It All, Misery, Luxurious, Harajuku Girls, Let Me Blow Ya Mind, Rich Girl, Hella Good, What You Waiting For?, Rare, Go Ahead and Break My Heart, It’s My Life, Asking 4 It, Don’t Speak, Naughty, Used to Love You, Hollaback Girl, Truth, Just a Girl, The Sweet Escape

rs_600x600-160418075720-600-gwen-stefani-this-is-what-the-truth-feels-like-tour-41816Comments: Gwen Stefani made a triumphant return to the music scene with her latest album and tour — This is What the Truth Feels Like. She is celebrating her 30th year in music this year. She came out of Orange Country in the late 1980’s with the band No Doubt. With their mix of rock, reggae, ska and punk, they were a breath of fresh air on the music scene. Years of touring and recording have earned them a dedicated following.

Gwen released her first solo album in 2004 — “Love. Angel. Music. Baby.” It was followed by “The Sweet Escape” in 2006. So it has been a long 10 years since her last solo album. There was one No Doubt album in between there, but it failed to set the world on fire. Gwen’s marriage to Gavin Rossdale fell apart. And she started a romance with her fellow coach Blake Shelton from “The Voice.”

Both the dissolution of her marriage and her new romance feature prominently on the new album. And it is one of the year’s best if you ask me. The album features the hits “Used to Love You” and “Make Me Like You.”

Gwen put on a high-energy, non-stop party of a concert that featured hits from No Doubt and her 3 solo albums. She had a big production with backup dancers and costume changes. I especially loved the punk-rock inspired tartan ensemble she wore at the start of the show.

She thanked the fans several times during the night for getting her through the rough times in her life. She looked and sounded fantastic. And yes, Blake Shelton did show up for his lady to sign their duet “Go Ahead and Break My Heart.”

All night I kept asking myself, why haven’t I seen her before? She puts on a fantastic show. I would definitely see her again. One of the highlights for me was when she sang “Hella Good.” The whole venue was jumping literally! It was awesome to see.

And it was cool that she brought out Eve for the 2 songs: “Let Me Blow Your Mind” and “Rich Girl.”

Eve was the opening act. I was not familiar with her songs at all other than the Gwen duet. I am more familiar with her acting from the “Barbershop” movies. She had a few backup dancers, a DJ and a drummer. Lots of songs with attitude, you can tell she probably inspired Nicki Minaj.

Thanks to Gwen and her band for a awesome show! I loved it.

KiltManinSoCal is a Los Angeles-based writer and designer. Be sure to check out the latest T-Shirts for sale here, including Marriage Equality and Real Men Wear Kilts lines. They make great gifts for friends, family and loved ones.

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The Problem with The Voice

NBC’s The Voice returns this fall for all new episodes with new coaches: Gwen Stefani and Pharrell Williams. This show has taken the country by storm for sure. People love the rotating chairs and the concept of finding a real singer… someone known for their Voice. Adam Levine and Blake Shelton’s popularity have both soared since they have been on the show. But what about the winners? Can you name one, and if so, what is the title of their hit single? So there is definitely a problem with the show as Adam Levine himself suggested. I watched this show the first 3 seasons, but gave up when I saw that you never heard from the winners again. It’s not like the contestants aren’t talented because they are. Read on for my suggestions to make this show relevant to today’s pop charts.The Voice Season 7

  1. First off I feel there is a disconnect between the show and the singer’s post Voice careers. With American Idol, they are invested with the winners. The company behind Idol (19 Entertainment) manages them after they win. So that is why the contestants do a tour and an album each for the Top 2 usually. Not so with the Voice. I think in season 1, there was a small tour for the Top Ten. There was a recent tour this past summer too. But not enough to really connect with their fans.
  2. You can say it is all about the voice all you want. But in reality, looks and personality play a big part too. So are great songs, great producers, and having a marketing budget behind you.
  3. There’s too much of The Voice on TV. With NBC, running the show 2 times a year, there is not much time for the winner to celebrate. By the time one gets their album out finally, another winner is already being crowned. The most recent winner last May 20th was Josh Kaufman. The previous winner was Tessanne Chin and her album came out July 1. Did anyone care?
  4. So much fuss is made about the celebrity mentors. Sure, star power is nice. But why not have people more relevant to becoming a star? I am thinking of songwriters, producers, stylists, talent managers, radio DJs… Dianne Warren and David Foster are 2 names that come to my mind who would be good. Pharrell being on there definitely adds something… as for me, I am more familiar with his productions and songs, than I am with his own records.
  5. NBC has 2 venues that I think should be used to promote Voice winners or contestants… The Today Show and Saturday Night Live. Why not have a winner be the musical guest on SNL, or do a morning concert on The Today Show?
  6. Why not give us a release date or a preorder option for the winner’s album? Idol has done that for the past 2 winners… Candice’s album was delayed. But Caleb Johnson’s album came out about 2 months after winning Idol. And it is good too. (I guess I was one of few to care… he debuted horribly, so Idol is having a tough time breaking stars these days too.)
  7. Let the contestants sing their own songs! I have never seen an original song on there yet. Idol is letting the contestants do originals the last few seasons. It gives the viewer a better look into what type of artist they want to be.

So will you be watching this season of The Voice? One of these days someone is going to break out. I might watch it again… and I hope that the winner actually does something this time.

KiltManinSoCal is a Los Angeles-based writer and designer. Be sure to check out the latest T-Shirts for sale here, including Marriage Equality and Real Men Wear Kilts lines. They make great gifts for friends, family and loved ones.

Concerts I Am Looking Forward To In 2013

Here’s my list of the shows I am looking forward to this year:

Lady GaGa
Lady GaGa has been on tour with the “Born This Way” Ball for awhile now (She was on my list last year). It is finally hitting the US in the first half of the year.Lady GaGa

Rihanna
Well, the tour in 2012 never developed. And she was in the flop movie “Battleship”. She is touring behind her new CD “Unapologetic”, and is sure to include hits from the “Talk That Talk” album too. The new tour called “Diamonds” tour is set to hit the states in March.

Taylor Swift
Her latest CD “Red” is flying off the shelves… and so are the tickets to her latest tour which includes stadium shows in select cities. With her move fully into pop music with this latest CD, I am sure it will be a very theatrical and entertaining evening.

Maroon 5
I tried to get tickets for the 2013 tour, but they sold out very fast. They have been hotter since Adam Levine has been on “The Voice”. Plus supporting acts Owl City and Neon Trees should add to a great evening of live music.

(more…)

Country Hunks

I am a country music fan. I started out liking the women first: the Judds, Dolly Parton. But as I heard more and more from the guys, I got into them too. The things I like about country music, are the stories they tell, the way the melodies get stuck in your head, and how relatable the songs are to so many people. Not to mention the fact that a lot of the hottest stars in country are pretty darn good–looking. Here is a list of my favorite country hunks and their essential albums/singles:

Keith Urban
I first heard him described as country music for people that don’t like country. His music is very rock oriented. And the songs are so catchy, you will be singing along to them after the first listen. Essential albums: “Be Here” and “Golden Road.” Songs: “Once in a Lifetime” and “Making Memories of Us.”

Dierks Bentley
The frat boy from Arizona has hit the big time. He’s got beautiful curly hair, but he looks good with it cut too. When he sings “Come a Little Closer,” you can feel the sexual tension. Essential albums: “Modern Day Drifter” and “Long Trip Alone.” Songs: “So So Long” and “Sideways.”

Kenny Chesney
OK, so he was married to Rene Zellweger for like 15 minutes. And he is hiding a bald head under his cowboy hat. He still has a hot body and puts on a great live show. Essential albums: “When the Sun Goes Down” and “No Shoes, No Shirt, No Service.” Songs: “Live Those Songs Again” and “The Good Stuff.”

Tim McGraw
Mr. Faith Hill is a superstar in his own right. More often seen with his hat on, he is a real man who treats his lady well. I can see why some girl grabbed his crotch in concert. Essential albums: “Set This Circus Down” and “Let It Go.” Songs: “Live Like You Were Dying” and “Over and Over.”

Josh Turner
Before Scotty McCreery made us fall in love with him singing “Your Man,” the song belonged to this hunk with the beautiful bass voice. Plus he also includes one spiritually themed song per CD. Essential albums: “Your Man” and “Everything is Fine.” Songs: “Would You Go with Me” and “Why Don’t We Just Dance.”

Big & Rich
Country never met a duo like Big & Rich. They love to mix up genres, and add rock, funk and hip hop to their sound. Essential albums: “Horse of a Different Color” and “Between Raising Hell and Amazing Grace.” Songs: “Save a Horse (Ride a Cowboy)” and “Lost in This Moment.”

Darius Rucker
The former lead singer of Hootie and the Blowfish has made a name for himself in the country world. He brings soul and rock n’ roll to his songs. He has a great duet with Jill Scott on her “Collaborations” CD. Essential albums: “Learn to Live” and “Charleston, SC 1966.” Songs: “Alright” and “This.”

Billy Currington
One of the hottest bodies in country music (See the video for “Why, Why Why”), and another hunk with beautiful curly brown hair. Essential albums: “Doin’ Something Right” and “Little Bit of Everything.” Songs: “Good Directions” and “Don’t.”

Blake Shelton
Now mentoring new singers on “The Voice,” this hunk is married to tough country chick Miranda Lambert. I became a fan when I saw him open for Rascal Flatts: Essential albums: “Barn and Grill” and “Pure BS.” Songs: “Cotton Pickin Time” and “Honey Bee.”

Charles Kelley (Lady Antebellum)
The key to this group’s popularity is in the vocal interplay between Charles and Hilary Scott. They are not a couple, but they sure sound like one. Charles is tall, handsome and bearded. Essential albums: “Lady Antebellum” and “Need You Now.” Songs: “Lookin’ for a Good Time” and “Just a Kiss.”

So who are your favorite country hunks? I hope you check out their music… they don’t just look good, they sound good too.

Spice69man is a Los Angeles-based writer and designer. Be sure to check out the latest T-Shirts for sale here, including the Real Men Wear Kilts line. They make great gifts for friends, family and loved ones.

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