Review: Melissa Etheridge and Serena Ryder live at the NAC

Melissa Etheridge and Serena RyderFirst off.  It has to be said.  Melissa Etheridge is totally loony tunes and has an ego the size of the universe.  Half the time she was chattering away she sounded like Boomhauer and I had no idea what she was trying to say.  I feel much better now that I’ve gotten that off my chest.  Though, she was so darn awesome musically that we’ll let it slide.  I was thankful that Melissa did all her old standbys and I was transported back to my teenybop years when you could hear her music being played on the radio every ten minutes.  Since I’m 27 going on 57, anything that makes me feel like a young whippersnapper again is GOOD!

The crowd mostly comprised of pairs of very confident women with short hair, which I thought was kind of nifty.  Though I’ve had gay and lesbian friends, I’ve never really thrown myself out there into a gathering made up of mostly that crowd.  I was surprised to find myself realizing that it was just like any other concert with any other crowd and I was surprised (and a little ashamed) to find myself surprised.  But there you have it.

Serena was absolutely astounding as I knew she would be.  I got completely caught up in her enthusiasm.  She just LOVES what she does.  Her voice was fantastic and her songs catchy and heartfelt but what I really noticed was how fluid she is.  Her little kicks and jiggles and spins and head bangs, her shaggy top and hair flying every which way, the way she held her tiny guitar felt like literally an extension of herself.  Her whole being was absorbed and immersed in her performance and she was having FUN!  And her fun was extremely contagious – even Melissa Etheridge herself wasn’t immune.

The most powerful moment of the evening was when Melissa invited Serena up on stage for their duet “Broken Heart Sun”.  It was inspiring the way the two women interacted and played off each other.  Serena seemed to give Melissa some energy and the remainder of her set was even more amped up.

Here’s Broken Heart Sun live at the NAC.

I know I’ve said it before, but I REALLY need to learn how to play guitar now.


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