16 03 2012

July! was in San Jose on Wednesday night once again for, what I think is, my first show of the 2012 year. Let me think, hmm hmm hmm, yes. first one. And honestly, what a terrific way to start off my 2012 Concert Season. I keep telling people, ‘2011 is going to be hard to beat,’ but 2012 got off to a terrific start with a legendary artist and performer: Ricardo Arjona.

Wednesday marked the third time I’ve seen Ricardo in concert … and unlike other artist who I’ve seen multiple times, there is no such thing as a favorite with Ricardo — each instance has meant something different to me. First time I saw him, was as a fan with friends and we were much too drunk to truly enjoy the show. Second time, I was a rookie reporter who had no idea how to start a concert review. And Wednesday, well Wednesday was just sweet.

Photos are courtesy of Viridiana P. and her iPhone. Viri was nice enough to come along and keep me company. I have a feeling she enjoyed the show because as I jotted down notes, she sat there very starry-eyed, smiling and seemingly content with letting Ricardo serenade her. Hehe. The man has that swooning effect on people .. female or male. And other effects as well, apparently.

Above is Ricardo performing, “Sin Daños A Terceros,” … a real ‘wow’ moment in the show. And of those there were PLENTY. Anyways, a bit of the review follows:

By Julio Lara, Daily Journal Staff

It hardly seems fair actually, for the Latino music gods to bestow so much musical genius onto one man.

But they did. And that man is Ricardo Arjona, the singer/songwriter from Guatemala.

The proof is in the pudding, so to speak, after Arjona’s latest Bay Area performance at the HP Pavilion in San Jose. The 22-song concert was vintage Arjona, a clinic on how to combine unparalleled vocal ability, charisma in spades and poetic gold put to a form of melodic romanticism.

The result was a show in which Arjona, now 22 years deep into a career, made putting on a fantastic performance look much too easy.

Some additional thoughts on the set (list) which I’ll add to the bottom of this post:

• Lord knows I tried very hard to find the name of Ricardo’s back-up singer for this tour. And I failed. But it shouldn’t go unsaid that she was fantastic. If you trace back through Arjona’s catalog of songs, you’ll hear strong female back-up vocals (say, in songs like Desnuda). Wednesday night, Arjona’s back-up singer took center stage performing the female half of the duet in “Fuiste Tu.” She did an excellent job.

• Yes, people. I still take personal offense to excessive camera use. I figure that probably won’t ever change with me. It’s a little more forgivable in a show like Arjona’s, but seriously, NO. Take it from me, I don’t like to be told to sit down during a concert ESPECIALLY when you’re trying to sit me down because I’m in the way of your shot (excuse ME, Scorsese).

• Songs performed off of Oh My July!’s Top 5 Arjona Songs of All-Time: 3. I guess “Realmente” and “Quien” are acquired tastes.

• Song of the Night finalists: El Amor … Como Duele … Te Conozco … Sin Daños a Terceros … Minutos … WINNER: Urgh. All of them?!? It’s my blog, I get to cheat.

• Someone threw something on stage midway through the show. Viri asked me what it was and my first thought was: panties. I even wrote it in my notes. I’ve seen it happen before.

Here’s the playlist for the night: 22 songs in all:

The July!-mobile will be busy in the next month. Stay tuned for, Michel Camilo, Rodrigo Y Gabriela, Mana and Calle 13. Until then, gracias.






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