red lights

Melissa Embraces Old Friends

Melissa Etheridge
Marcus Amphitheater
Milwaukee, WI
July 31, 2002
Melissa Etheridge Melissa Etheridge

Review and Photos by Terry Mayer

When the house lights went down and the white backdrop was lit up - all eyes focused forward in anticipation of Melissa Etheridge's entrance. Would it be with blinding lights and strobes? Would she emerge from an underground elevator? Or would it be descending down on a stairway with fountains of fireworks? As "I Want To Be In Love" blasted through the speakers, excited fans still could not find their artist anywhere, when out of the darkness, somewhere by row ZZ, Melissa made her entrance. Not on stage, but fully engulfed by her fans. A rather unique entrance, indeed.
With the familiar denim jacket and leather pants in place, Melissa, brimming over with energy, gave the crowd a night of her greatest hits spanning her long career. Playing songs from almost every one of her albums, she had to have every fan eagerly scratching off their favs from their want lists. The over-eager "I want To Come Over" from the popular selling Your Little Secret got a rousing response from the 7,000 plus fans.
More of a folk-rocker, from the late sixties and early seventies, then a pop diva of today, Etheridge dove into "Come To My Window" and "I'm The Only One," breathing new life into both. "Brave and Crazy" spoke emotionally and honestly to the crowd along with "Bring Me Some Water." An instrumental installment was a nice and refreshing segment that didn't drag on or bring the concert to a halt, but quite the opposite, it let you catch your breath and build anticipation for the rest of the show. As the night came to a close, "If I Wanted To" rounded out the first set and "Heal Me," from her more recent album Skin, confidently finished the encore.
With nothing really new to offer, other then "Secret Agent," the trip down memory lane made for an enjoyable evening. Less about making new friends, but more about fondly embracing old ones.

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