Bryan Adams @ London’s O2

December 10, 2011 § Leave a comment

Bryan Adam’s may be 52. But he can still rock. 

On Thursday evening I was fortunate enough to go and see him perform at the O2 Arena in London.

This was his last UK stop on his 20th Anniversary ‘Waking Up the Neighbours Tour’ (first released in 1981).

The ‘warm-up’ 

@bryanadams tweets

Coming into the arena I was not greeted by a warm-up act (Adams didn’t have one), but a large screen displaying tweets about @bryanadams. Some were witty, incorporating song lyrics into them, others were simply a way to get ‘onto’ the big screen.

As this was only my second concert I’ve ever been to, I’m not sure if it’s usual to not have a warm-up act. Personally, I think it would have been a nice way of getting people into the mood. But what do I know?

The concert itself 

Bryan Adams

Coming on late at 8.15PM (what rock concert actually starts on time, right?), Adams and his backing band (including the amazing lead guitarist, Keith Scott), blasted on to the stage straight away.

The first part of the concert, for me at least, was a little hard to sing along with. Most of the songs at the beginning (House Arrest, If You Wanna Leave Me Can I Come Too) were from earlier albums – I wasn’t introduced to Adams until his 1996 album, ’18 til I Die’.

However, his voice, the band and the enthusiasm from the sell-out crowd meant that I didn’t feel out of place.

Unsurprisingly, the two songs that got everyone in the arena singing along with unreserved enthusiasm were, ‘(Everything I Do) I Do It For You’, made famous by the being the theme-song for ‘Robin Hood’ (the Kevin Costner version) and ‘Summer of 69‘ – I swear there wasn’t a single person sitting down for that one.

For both of these songs (two of my favourite’s) the crowd started off singing on their own and them Adams came in. It was something I really liked about the concert.

My highlights

For me, there were a number of highlights to the concert, some funny and some just purely wonderful:

1) The fact that Bryan Adams played four different guitars throughout the evening, as well as the harmonica; and the fact that he sounds live exactly the same as he does on CD

2) The moment when lead guitarist Keith Scott knocked the one of microphones off stage after falling on his back and having Bryan Adams playfully step on him

3) Drummer Mickey Curry’s solo performance, not on his drum kit, but on pots and pans. It was absolutely amazing. Wish I had recorded that part on my phone!

4) The moment when Adams brought onto stage one lucky fun. The guy (who was a bit of Gok Wan lookalike and who was sitting in the aisle opposite me!), sang the Mel C part of the duet ‘When You’re Gone’. The guys high voice was  a hit with the crowd.

On his own…. 

The best part of the concert, for me, was the very end. After playing ‘There Will Never Be Another Tonight’ Adams thanked his band – as did the crowd with our applause.

After his backing band had left Adam’s stood on stage, on his own, and played three acoustic songs: ‘The Way You Make Me Feel’, ‘Straight Form the Heart‘ and ‘All for Love’.

Particularly beautiful was ‘All For Love’ where Adams encouraged the crowd to get out their mobile phones and sway them back and forth as he sang. It made the arena look as though it was full of stars – no matter how cheesy that may sound!

Everyone getting their phones out during 'All for Love'

The simplicity of the show ending with one man, on his own, playing his guitar was just exquisite.

Saying his farewells to the crowd, Adams said “I love you London. That’s why I live here.”

Now, to figure out exactly where in London that is…..

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