(Melanie opened for Art Garfunkel in this concert, which was held at the Ruth Eckerd Memorial Hall in Clearwater. Art disappeared after the concert, but Melanie stayed around to greet her fans.)
I've heard it said that Melanie doesn't do as well when she opens for another act, or when she does a larger venue. Not so in this case. She had the audience eating out of her hand. And I could tell that the feedback was getting to her. She was thoroughly enjoying herself, more and more as the show went on. And it went on longer than was intended. She sang for at least 45 minutes. Near the end of her part, Peter came out on stage and whispered something into Leilah's ear, which she relayed to Melanie. It turned out that what he was saying was that the theater people wanted her to hurry up. Her only apparent concession to that was to cut short the repeating part at the end of Lay Down (Candles). Way to go, Melanie -- don't let the theater gestapo push you off stage.
As others have reported, Melanie had the whole fam there, and they all were just great. She didn't stick to the playlist that Peggy got from her, though. (This is not a cut at Peggy, folks. She was sitting right in front of me, and I could see that she was completely absorbed in Melanie, and it's easy to forget which song was when, when that happens.) I wrote down the songs as they were performed, and here is what I wrote down.
Brand New Key
Look What They Done To My Song, Ma
(standing ovation here)
Lay Down (Candles in the Rain)
She had some nice chatter about some of the songs, including Momma, Momma, which she said she wrote at age 16, and Jammin' Alone, which she said she just finished. She also mentioned that the song she recorded with that hip-hop group is Ruby Tuesday.
I got autographs from her and all her kids. I also asked Peter, but he said he doesn't do autographs. I met some of our fine cyber fans, including Hippy Girl, Peggy, and Andrew. I guess I also met Michael, but I can't seem to remember him. Hippy Girl and I hung around for quite a while afterwards in the lobby, absorbing the glow.
I tried to get in with my big old Cannon AE1 camera, but as you have seen, cameras weren't allowed. But someone (a list member named Peggy) sneaked in a small camera, and will be sending me copies of the pictures for my web site. I will also be putting up my autographs.
This was my first live Melanie show, and I couldn't be more pleased at how it turned out. It was a really great show, I got to meet Melanie and the kids, and I got to meet some of our "Beautiful People".
The pictures from this concert are here.
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