So I had the honor of attending the Beacon Theatre for Ledisi’s ‘Truth’ tour on Weds 30th April. Now I am not going to lie, because of the brutal rainfall of that day, I had a couple of moments of ‘Really?! I am going to go outside again, get drenched AGAIN…?!?!?!’ But my gosh I am SO glad I soldiered through and made the long long trip from Bushwick to 75th and Broadway.
My initial pull to attending this gig was that The Robert Glasper Experiment were also on the bill, and Black Radio is in my top 5 albums of all time, so I wasn’t about to miss the chance to witness this incredible combination of artists.
I was not disappointed.
For roughly an hour I was washed over with the most incredible Jazz, Hip Hop sounding melodic loveliness I have ever heard live. If you ever get the chance to see these guys, then absolutely 100% jump on that ship, walk that river, swim that ocean and make it happen! Your brain, and soul will thank you. From Glasper on the keys creating such a warm padding of bliss, to the drummer (sorry I forget his name – But it wasn’t Chris Dave) TEARING it up, and not forgetting the legendary Derrick Hodge rinsing his bass to the ground and back up again, it really was one of the best musical moments of my life!
But nothing could have prepared me for what came next.
Enter the phenomenal Ledisi.
Now I found Ledisi through the Black Radio album, and was obsessed with the track ‘Gonna be alright’, so I found the rest of her music and started to make it part of my loop. Now I have to say, I haven’t ever been super blown away by anything I have heard, but I always kept it on rotation because her lyrics and melodies are interesting and as a vocalist she is definitely someone to study.
The genre I would say her newest album ‘The Truth’ falls under would be soft RnB/Pop with a lick of Gospel thrown in for good measure.
Now her live performance at The Beacon was something that I will remember forever. On paper, this gig would have looked like a pretty standard pop production that wouldn’t have been any different from a Beyonce or Gaga gig. The inclusion of backing dancers, costume changes and a lot of talk in between tracks would traditionally not be something I would be looking for for an evening of music alongside the likes of Glasper and his crew.
On stage, this was a show that could have gone on forever, and I would have stayed.
Her vocals were out of this world, her personality shone through every single switchover, and her strong message of confidence and empowerment for women really struck a chord. She owned the stage, looked fly as phuck, and danced as well as her backup dancers. Ledisi even came right out into the stalls of the audience and addressed audience members directly. It was almost like she was holding sermon in the church of music and life, and we all could not get enough.
Her band was, in her words, ‘A mixture of old school and new school’ and you could tell from their communication and love for each other that they were seasoned pros. I won’t even go into the individual praise for each member, as this would be the longest blog post in the history of the world. But trust me, they were all absolutely amazing!
Man am I glad I braved the torrential rain. Not even getting lost on the subway on my way home managed to dampen my after gig buzz, and let me tell you… I got LOST LOST.
Thankyou Ledisi for being the beauty and brains behind a night I will never forget!