Ann Arbor 05/04/2005 Concert review

Review by Michele K edited by ChemBob (Switch to

I saw snowflakes the day before this show, somehow I just knew that with TR being in town the weather would take a turn for the best, his mystical powers and all. The weather was great, thanks TR. No cameras allowed but the venue did do something nice, they handed out programs. That is the only thing nice I can say about the Michigan Theater in Ann Arbor (other than good acoustics). The security was tight, there were 5 of them lined up against the wall where I was sitting, near the front (1 guard and 4 venue volunteers who let the job go to their heads). I was going to take photos during the encore but it wasn’t worth the risk. The tension coming from them made the show less enjoyable and the crowd was stiff. Not at all like most TR shows where the fans can really show their appreciation for his work.

On to the show...I knew it was going to be a great night upon walking in some guy commented to me that I must be from the Wizard a True Star era! Yes folks there are Todd or Joe shirts for sale at the shows, black with the white faces on them. These were in the lobby near the beer.

Ethel was surprisingly good, the cello player was my favorite. Joe’s piano had a rattle during his set. It was fixed between his and Todd’s set. Joe lost his place during one song, distracted by audience sing along; he made light of it, seems to be a very quiet person. He said he was very happy to be here, since they were in Cleveland last night!! He got a standing ovation at the end of his set. Judging from the TR shirts and applause when he came out this was a TR audience. Once he took the stage he pretty much seemed in charge of the gig. TR looks great, his shorter hair makes him look like the old Todd again, he looked very thin, and was in such a great mood. His voice was solid and his playing right on. He had mentioned that one of his fingers was hurting badly, something about chewing on it too much. He did a really nice acoustic version of Afterlife, sang without playing while Ethel accompanied him on Pretending to Care. TR broke a string during Black Maria on foamy and, like a pro, he picked up the acoustic guitar, slammed the cord into it and kept on playing. Didn't seem to miss a lick. His heart and soul was really into these songs. This had to be one of the best solo tours I have seen TR do. It was great seeing all of the Apple Mac laptops controlling the stage, sound, etc. my guess light sequencing and audio. This one is for the girls, he had on his prison shoes, beige sharkskin suit and green shirt unbuttoned.

Outside, Joe Jackson was standing in the alley with 2 men chatting, Ethel members walked by and the crowd applauded them on. Fans were trying to get up to the back door but kept being chased away by the guards. Backstage the guard told me Todd was in “this room”. When I looked in I saw his clothes hanging, those sharkskin pants, green shirt, jacket on the back of a chair, but no Todd. I told the guard that he wasn’t in there. He said he should be, so I pointed out to him that Todd is mystical and all but he couldn't just disappear--out pops Todd from the dressing room in this great pink layered shirts with my pink lei on. We match we match! Being in Todd’s aura makes one speechless. A million questions running thru my mind, but not wanting to ask anything anyone else has asked him before, not wanting to hog all of his time either. Giggling inside wanting to come across as semi-intelligent I managed to find out a few things that we all have been pondering; the Liars dvd should be released in July as far as TR’s part in it, it is done just waiting for the release date. He cut his hair after dying it all blonde.

Todd went outside and spent quite some time signing autographs, answering questions, even giving out his email address to a small crowd of fans who were waiting out back because the guards had finally gone home. The light above the backstage door kept going off for a while then back on, adding to the strangeness of the evening. There is nothing like being in Todd’s aura it is all you can do to stand there and absorb it all One girl had asked Todd for his lei, the one I gave him. He told her NO that it was a gift and he couldn’t give it away. The guy with the girl said “oh she just wanted to get lei’d by Todd” and started teasing her about it, to which another girl commented “don’t we all?” ChemBob and Shaun both chimed in "I don't." LOL. There was a Journalist from a local Ypsilanti newspaper there who told Todd he was going to give him a helluva review, Todd told him he'd better or all of these people (fans standing around him) would kick his ***. He asked Todd what he thought of the music business today and Todd told him that the music companies are clueless and that musicians should just get out there and play music and not worry about record deals. The main thing was that you have to be able to play.

Todd told ChemBob how Roger Powell is strengthening his wrists for the possible Utopia tour. (Too funny to post).

One girl named Liv, “hum Liv that is a lovely name”, asked Todd to put his email address on her cd, he did so, she couldn’t read it so Todd told her to ask Michele she knows my email address, so I gave it to her later. We all said our goodbyes and Todd turned around and headed through the door and back into the backstage area.

Red states here he comes! Be nice to Todd.

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05/04/2005 - Michigan Theater - Ann Arbor, MI

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