Saturday was sing-along with twentysomething girls night at Warehouse Live. English transplant Greg Holden opened the night with a disappointingly brief set, but the lack of quantity certainly didn't seem to affect him in any way. Genuinely excited to be on tour and onstage, Holden with his raspy tenor and guitar kept the crowd with him every step of the way, from the opening song "The Chase," through his dichotic duo of songs about New York ("She's Got Something" and "You're Scaring Me," from recent Sing for the City EP) and even a stripped-down rave-up of Katrina and the Waves' "Walking on Sunshine." Though a musician of the sensitive and honest variety, Holden certainly wasn't shy, bonding with the crowd through comparisons of the accents of Northern England (he was spawned in Lancashire) and southern United States, at first mangling "y'all" before the entire room was "whoa-oa-oa"-ing with him, finally ending his set with Michaelson and her band joining him for the chorus of his "Bar on A."
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Saturday was yet another sold-out show for Michaelson, still enjoying the success that began on the Internet and landed her music on Grey's Anatomy and Old Navy commercials. But don't let such commercial success fool one into thinking Michaelson is a tool. Behind her catchy, TV-friendly, indie-pop exterior is a sweet but sensitive outsider, sometimes bordering on a "creepy chick that lives down the street and has a shrine including hair and toenail samples of you" sorta vibe. Not that she could be called a loner. After Holden's strictly solo set, Michaelson's band of six was nearly orchestral, giving her songs of love, sex and acceptance the full album treatment.
Her set began - after running backstage to retrieve her forgotten ukulele - with the presenting of gifts. A group of young fans (one only nine years old) made her two dolls with Velcro attachments to cover their sightless eyes. Even Michaelson, who said that she had received cookies and brownies had to admit the dolls were a little creepy, most likely ensuring that another generation creates shrines with snippets of the singer's DNA collected after the show. Once the dolls were settled, she went into "Soldier" from her most recent release, Everybody. As flirty with the audience as Holden was, Michaelson had a thousand college kids enrapt, singing along and hanging on her every word, more than one swooning as Michaelson described her role playing the perfect gentleman on a date with each and every member of the crowd. She received a few headshakes when threatening that one of her songs was so "S-E-exy" that it was known to make some watching spontaneously pregnant but it didn't send anyone scurrying to the exit. Hitting highlights like "You and I" and "The Way I Am," Michaelson and crew entertained a sizable group for well over an hour, even coming back for (of course) an encore consisting of an ode to Mexican food and the Grey's Anatomy hit "Keep Breathing."