Review by Natasha Wyborn
SHERYL CROW & MELISSA ETHERIDGE
April 6th 2017 Margaret Court Arena, Melbourne, Victoria
Sheryl Crow had the audience in her hand from the moment she energetically run out on stage.
Crow began her 14 song “best of” set with “Everyday Is a Winding Road,” quickly followed by “A Change Would Do You Good” pausing briefly to acknowledge the crowd saying “it’s had been way, way too long” echoing her love for Australia and her missing touring here.
“All I Wanna Do” went over a treat complete with audience participation. “Everyone’s over there watching the footies, but you came to see us” reflecting on a local AFL game filling the Melbourne Cricket Ground located adjacent to the arena. Crow’s personality and relationship with the audience was natural, unrehearsed and appreciated. A gift of a koala given to her by a devoted fan in the audience touched her and commanded a place front and centre on the microphone stand for the rest of the set.
“My Favourite Mistake”, “Can’t Cry Anymore” and Crow’s own take of the Cat Stevens classic “The First Cut Is the Deepest” followed. Throughout the set Crow’s vocal range was excellent. There was also a moment where Crow reflected on the current state of her country, wanting to keep her show child friendly Crow fell short of using the swear words to emphasise her frustration but you got the message. “I have to believe the best days are in front of us, because I have two children.” before going into “Halfway There” from the 2017 album “Be Myself”. Getting close to the end of her set Crow invited Melissa Etheridge on stage to join her the for the Allman Brothers classic “Midnight Rider”. Overall a great set, Crow is at home on acoustic and electric guitar, bass, harmonica and piano, “I Love my band” referring to her powerhouse 6 piece and “I love you” referring to a very appreciative audience before ending with “I shall believe” and departing the stage.
A short interval and Melissa Etheridge took centre stage, dressed in leather and meaning business from the start, the audience remained on its feet from the first to the last of her powerhouse set. Opening with “Your Little Secret” from the 1995 same titled album it was full steam ahead for the 56 year old singer-songwriter from Kansas moving into “No Souvenirs” and “Similar Features” Etheridge maintained throughout her set a personal and intimate connection with her audience. Talking and sharing anecdotes about life with a particular emphasis on past relationships the set was everything about what she has learn in her life experience. Moving into “You Used to Love to Dance” from the 1989 album “Brave and Crazy” Etheridge took the audience on a very intimate journey of love lost in her past, complete with a sensual solo dance with her electric guitar around the stage. Songs including “Lover Please”, “I Want to Come Over”, “Indiana”, “Come to My Window” again were all reflections and lyrics derived from former lovers and relationships in her life.
Etheridge reflected on her previous visits to Melbourne commenting on where grass use to be is now surrounded by buildings “Melbourne you have grown” further connecting with the audience. As an observer you could not help but be impressed with Etheridge’s energy and overall stage presence. Multiple guitar changes from electric to her trade mark 12 string acoustic combined with that unique husky voice was music to all punters ears. Supported by a three piece band Etheridge carried solo all the guitar duties. Her band moved promptly throughout changing from rock to country and even touching on some blues complete with Etheridge on harmonica. Fans to Etheridge are everything taking time to acknowledge their presence throughout her three decade long career.
I walked away pleased to have witnessed two of modern rocks true survivors still in the peak of their careers.
Sheryl Crow Setlist
Everyday Is A Winding Road, A Change Would Do You Good, All I Wanna Do, My Favorite Mistake, Can’t Cry Anymore, The First Cut Is The Deepest, There Goes The Neighborhood, Halfway There, Strong Enough, Best Of Times, If It Makes You Happy, Soak Up The Sun, Midnight Rider with Melissa Etheridge, I Shall Believe
Melissa Etheridge Setlist
Your Little Secret, No Souvenirs, Similar Features, You Used to Love to Dance, Lover Please, I Want to Come Over, Indiana, Come to My Window, Chrome Plated Heart, I’m the Only One, Bring Me Some Water
Like the Way I Do.