Thanks to VH1, I was able to go to the Usher concert on Sunday in Anaheim. I won a VH1 twitter contest, and one of the prizes was two tickets to a concert of VH1's choosing in my home city. I was hoping it would be a) someone I liked and b) on a date I could go, and thanks to Jennifer at VH1, I was able to get tickets to this awesome show.
The seats were incredible - on the left side just off the floor, which is my favorite place to sit in an arena concert. We were close to the stage and able to see everything.
I came in too late to see the first opening act, Miguel, but was there for the second opener, Trey Songz. I must admit I wasn't familiar much with his music, other than "Bottoms Up" and "Say Ahh", but I really enjoyed his set. Didn't hurt that he's really good-looking and took off his shirt. Ahem. Trey Songz could definitely headline his own shows. The crowd went nuts for him, and he really played to every section of the arena, even going so far as to call people and whole sections in the top out individually. He certainly made a connection with the audience. He also busted out a few covers for the noobs like me who don't know his music, and they were pretty great. He did an R&B-flavored "Use Somebody", which I think might be my favorite version of that song by anybody. He also sang a few lines of Rihanna's "Love The Way You Lie", which sounded really good, and added a little of "In Da Club" into "Say Ahh". I got video of two other songs he did: Panty Droppa and Jupiter Love. Unfortunately (or fortunately) he didn't sing "LOL :-)" (I wanted to see that for the lulz).
Love The Way You Lie:
Usher's set was pretty spectacular staging-wise and dance-wise. I've been mostly going to rock/pop concerts all year, where you didn't see much more than a light show, so this was a bit different for me. It was really entertaining. Vocally it wasn't the best, but with this kind of show, you're not really there to hear perfect vocals. You just sit back and watch the spectacle, and sing and dance along. It was a lot of fun. The choreography was, at times, jaw-dropping. Check out the opening number, "Monstar". Talk about pulling out all the stops.
Usher pretty much sang all of his big hits plus stuff from his new album. He's got enough hits to do a medley towards the end, and he did "Confessions Pt. 1" & "Confessions Pt. 2", "My Boo", "I Need A Girl" and "Lovers & Friends" together. The one part of the show that kind of lost me was when he brought an audience member on stage and sang to her while basically turning the show into a private bedroom session. It felt very intrusive and really took me out of the show, to be honest. Plus, it felt very staged. But outside of that particular performance, everything else was really entertaining, and Usher played to all parts of the arena, including way in the back when he got on a moving platform above the audience. Pretty cool.
One of the big highlights for me was the dancing in "You Make Me Wanna". Go watch this. It's queued up to the part that made me jump up in glee. SICK.
I also really enjoyed "DJ Got Us Fallin' In Love Again" and "OMG":
A couple other songs I got were "U Remind Me" and "Little Freak".