Norah Jones: live review

Norah Jones performed an hour and a half of exquisitely arranged and vocally powerful songs, mostly from her latest album Little Broken Hearts, at Bank of America Pavilion on Sunday night. She started with the strong, clear “Take It Back” and the grooving “Say Goodbye.” A stand-out song was a slowed down version of “She’s 22.” It’s challenging to be dynamic behind keyboards yet watching Norah you feel she’s fully invested in her performance. She’s at ease, focused, calm despite everything going on around her onstage. She’s in command of herself and her musicianship. She’s such a talent playing acoustic and electric guitar, piano and keyboards. The changing drop, doves lighting added an effective chanteuse/ cabaret-vibe that enabled Norah to be intimate with the crowd in a non-club venue.

Norah needs not be cutesy or sexy, though she’s naturally gorgeous. She doesn’t need props or quirky stage tricks like Katy Perry. She’s a musician, a performer. She’s got the chops and seeing her perform proves it. Her powerhouse voice, contemplative lyrics and intricate arrangements propel every song and mesmerize the audience. She commented that it was “fun to be here” and that there should be a Boston band called “The Tall Ships.” She also found the mega screens to the side of the stage rather amusing and commented: “It’s really weird being able to watch my own show. Posture.”

The Americana songs she added to the set fell a bit flat but also mixed up the sound. I didn’t mind them but didn’t find them terribly catchy or memorable either. The stripped down “Miriam” [and I went to the concert with my close pal Miriam] with a solo Norah at the piano proved fittingly moving and haunting. This led to one of the best, catchiest post-break-up songs ever, “Happy Pills—“with the line: “Ima gonna getcha outta my head.” Norah Jones is an artist whose music I play from end-to-end and over and over again. I dissect the lyrics and my body automatically grooves to the beats. If you get a chance to catch Norah Jones on tour it’s well worth it.

purchase at Amazon: Little Broken Hearts

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