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Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Anthony Hamilton
On a night unlike any other, downtown Los Angeles was truly the entertainment capital of the world. Lakers fans were in frenzy with NBA finals hoopla as the Los Angeles Lakers played the Orlando Magic in game 1 of the 2009 NBA finals. Across the street from the Staples Center where game one of the NBA finals was played, Nokia Live Theatre was as interestingly as entertaining playing host to six-time Grammy nominated artist Anthony Hamilton.
I am one of the biggest Lakers supporters this side of the Mississippi so I will be totally honest with you. I wasn’t too thrilled when I found out that the Anthony Hamilton concert fell on the same night as game 1 of the NBA finals. Don’t get me wrong, I very much so wanted to attend the concert but the timing worked out to be terrible for me. I am a huge Anthony Hamilton fan but taking a life-long Lakers fanatic away from his game is just wrong. However, I did get to catch the first half of the game while getting dressed for the concert and it was evident Kobe Bryant and the Lakers were going to take the win.
As I finished getting dressed and snapped out of Lakers la-la land, it hit me that I was on my way to a great performance and performer in Anthony Hamilton. I was privileged to have worked with Hamilton and his camp this past summer when he headlined the Summer Soul Jam concert sponsored by the City of Compton and yours truly the Los Angles Sentinel Newspaper. Hamilton lit up the Compton audience at the Par 3 golf course and proved to me back then that he was a force to be reckoned with.
As I arrived at the Nokia Live Theatre the atmosphere was exactly that, live. The ESPN zone was packed with game watchers, there were long waiting lines for restaurants, ESPN was prepping to film its nightly show, the lights were bright and crowds jammed the streets. Even the concert line was enjoyable, as the women were looking fine as ever. Of course that’s including my girlfriend (I love you babe).
As we entered the Nokia theatre the crowd was up and singing along with R&B artist Musiq Soulchild. To my surprise he wasn’t as powerful as I thought he would be. I tried my best to enjoy his performance but his voice just didn’t bring it home. Both my girlfriend and I wondered if his voice was hoarse or maybe he wasÂ sick. Not that he sounded that bad but there were more than a few notes he didn’t hit live that he hits on his album. I also didn’t like the fact that Muisiq stood in one spot the majority of his performance. It made me realize he was whispering too many lyrics. If it weren’t for Musiq Soulchild’s notable catalogue and the fact that the crowd wanted to sing along, Musiq would have surely sent everyone home early. But I guess that’s why he opened the show. He was just enough to make you say, “What’s next”?
With that being said I have to give much kudos and credit to Anthony Hamilton. I hate to compare Musiq Soulchild and Anthony Hamilton because their styles of singing are totally different from one another but there is something to say about performance energy.
From start to finish, Anthony Hamilton sounded exactly like he does on all of his records. You would think he records his records live because the quality of sound was so clean and crisp. That’s what made me realize how terrible Musiq Soulchild’s performance was. When you compare the two there is no comparison. I literally thought that the sound system was broken because at times Musiq sounded muffled and distorted. His sound engineer might be partly responsible but from my angle there isn’t much else he could have done.
Anthony Hamilton on the other hand was all over the stage. He was grooving, jumping, dancing and at one point literally jumped in the audience and ran around the entire Nokia Theatre. Hamilton didn’t care about security or anything. I felt like I was in church. Throughout his performance Hamilton gives praise to God and the crowd followed his lead.
The energy was high the entire performance, everyone was smiling and the band’s musical performance was phenomenal. I love how Hamilton’s band played off his emotions. It was easily recognizable that the band has a great chemistry and understanding of what Anthony Hamilton is trying to accomplish.
Hamilton performed many crowd favorites none better than “Charlene” which brought the house down. David Banner also surprised the crowd performing “I’m Cool” which is featured on Hamilton’s latest album “The Point of it All”. “The Point of it All” is actually Anthony Hamilton’s third official studio album.
All in all I have to give thumbs up to Anthony Hamilton’s Nokia Live performance. Hamilton is a must see for anyone who is a fan of R&B music. To see him live is to truly understand his brilliance.
Hamilton is today’s version of Al Green. He is just like a preacher on stage taking you on a soulful journey. I will forever tell people that I went to Church with Anthony Hamilton. The church just happened to be Nokia Live Theatre.