23 May 2010

The Blackberry Concert

"you know the type - accountants, lawyers, bankers, stamp collectors, Celine Dion fans etc...I started to cringe. How tight was his Levis?"

Recently No Worries and I left the gals with a friend and headed into the big smoke that is Sydney. This is not to say that Sydney is covered in smoke as it is not (unless you include the New Years Eve fireworks). We decided to have a night to ourselves which is very rare these days....

I had two tickets to see a concert that had two of the biggest music names from the 1980's performing - Spandau Ballet and Tears For Fears. Now I grew up on both groups but in the last couple of years have really become addicted to the music of Messrs Orzabal and Smith aka Tears. They truly are talented song smiths, great musicians and fantastic singers.

So after a meal at King Street wharf (which I have to say was very average given the reputation of the restaurant we ate at) we headed to the Ent Cent. Better know to all as the Sydney Entertainment Centre. We got to our seats just before Tears For Fears got on stage. No Worries, in her inimitable style, commented "everyone looks quite old!" This was probably true compared to her age (mid thirties). I had to remind her that the vast majority of fans would have grown up on the music like myself.

It was noticeable that the audience looked predominantly like they were white collar workers. You know the type - accountants, lawyers, bankers, stamp collectors, Celine Dion fans etc. I looked around the arena and saw that a lot of people were reading, presumably, emails on their mobile phones.

It was No Worries who pointed out to me that the people close to us were all using Blackberries as per Barack Obama, and many others. She was correct. Everyone was either busy on their mobiles or playing solitaire on them. At the time I certainly thought it was an astute observation.

The concert started and Tears For Fears were fantastic. They started off the gig with "Mad World" and then went into their biggest hit "Everybody Wants To Rule The World". I was wondering what the encore was going to be given that their most popular song had just been performed. In case you were wondering it was "Shout". Halfway through their set they performed my fave of theirs "Woman In Chains".

I was wondering who was going to do the female vocals as per the original. For this gig they were sung by a shaven headed guy. He hit the high notes so well that I started to cringe. How tight were his Levi's? was my constant thought. I am sure the other 10,000 fans thought the same. Subconsciously I crossed my legs. What ever the reason, he could sing extremely well. The concert finished and then there was a thirty minute break until the lads from Spandau Ballet were on. Again the corporate crowd were on their Blackberries again. This time, I suppose, to tell everyone of the Levis singing guy.

Before we knew it Spandau Ballet were on stage and gave two hours of absolutely fantastic music. The musicianship was top notch as was Tony Hadley's singing. For the anorak brigade out there, the group started with "To Cut A Long Story Short" and finished with "Gold". The music was not as rocky as with Tears but nevertheless fantastic.

After ninety minutes the group went off before the first encore. In the days of yore, people would get out their cigarette lighters, light them up and hold them high. In a big arena it could be visually appealing. Nowadays this isn't the case. We have moved on as a society. So what do us fans do now? We get out our Blackberries push a button or two and hold it up in the sky. I refrained from doing this as I don't have a Blackberry and my Nokia E65 was a dwarf. Still it was strange seeing all these mobile phones in the air.

Spandau came back on and did three more songs before leaving the stage for the post concert festivities. Interestingly there was not one swear word from either group during their performances. Surely this must be a world record!

As the fans started to leave in droves the Blackberries were out in force. Fingers were typing quickly to unknown recipients everywhere. What was being typed I have no idea. What is certain is that concert going has changed dramatically from the 1980's.