A Fond Farewell to a Tour That Dreams Are Made of
Photos by Ivan Guzman
American Idols Live! Tour
Revention Music Center
August 13, 2015
I have a confession to make: when I was in third or fourth grade, the highlight of my week would be watching American Idol on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. My obsession with the television giant began in Season 4 when I, and 30 million other people, watched Carrie Underwood get crowned the new winner. Since then I have watched every season, and have realized that the show has really made its mark on my music- and pop culture-centric childhood.
Most of us know that the series will be ending after its next year's final season, and it just so happens that I will be moving to New York in a couple weeks to start my first year of college. When I found out that this season’s Top 5 contestants were coming to Houston this summer, I decided to go as I figured it would probably be my last chance to see the American Idols Live! tour. It turns out that the concert gave me everything I needed and more.
The last time I went to the show-sponsored summer outing, my parents had to go with me, and I had them buy me those huge neon light sticks I now realize are way overpriced and just super unnecessary. Although that wasn’t the case this time, a couple things remained the same; one of them was how incredibly talented these contestants were. It’s cool to think that before going on the reality show these people were basically nobodies, and now they are super high-energy, professional, and impressive performers.
Take 17-year-old soul singer Tyanna Jones, whose stage presence was at the level of Janelle Monae and whose vocal talent was reminiscent of a refined wine. Then there’s this year’s winner, Nick Fradiani, whose comfort and ability to engage an audience proves that he is well beyond his years. This year’s runner-up, Clark Beckham, surprised the audience with his sheer vocal domination and technicality. All five of the contestants brought something different and amazing to the lineup, which proves that each year's Idol singers may be interesting enough to carry a reality TV show, but they're also talented enough to deliver in a live setting.
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The tour has definitely downgraded in the past few years. Thursday it struggled to fill up Revention Music Center as opposed to selling out the Woodlands Pavillion in 2010, but another thing that remained the same was how energetic and engaged the fans were. Despite dropping in ratings a little bit, a lot of people will always love American Idol, and I realized Thursday that it’s because of how excited and nostalgic the series makes you feel. Watching these little kids with homemade signs cheering for their favorite contestant made me remember when I was like that and would get so excited over someone getting that golden ticket and becoming this famous “Idol” overnight.
As I am moving away in a couple weeks to give the “American dream” a shot of my own (“Concrete jungle where dreams are madeee of!”), the Idols Live! tour was the perfect way to not only bring out that little fourth-grader in me but to also provide me with a night full of some impressive performances and good music.
Overheard In the Crowd: “Why is his shirt so long? And his pants are so tight! I think I’ve worn that outfit to work!”
The Crowd: Babies, walkers, and everything in between.
Random Notebook Dump: Since “Revention” looks and sounds so much like “reinvention,” I was hoping that something would feel all new-and-improved about the ole BMC, but it’s the same thing.
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