Last Night: Santigold at House Of Blues

Santigold, Charli XCX House of Blues June 7, 2012

Watching Santigold onstage, you'd have almost no idea that the 35-year-old former punk singer had a hand in developing the careers of some of the biggest pop starlets in the last decade. That is until you break down that her costume changes, the way she works the audience, and those crazy dance routines all come from a place of pure showmanship, a staple of the music industry.

Throw those elements into a pot along with a little punk, rocksteady, African jazz, tribal music and New Wave (Santigold says Devo is her No. 1 favorite band) and you've got one of the most endearingly eclectic musicians to ever take the stage at House of Blues.

Santigold reportedly dislikes comparisons to M.I.A., but for the uninitiated, it works. Both evolved from an early hip-hop/pop sound to make music with much more of an ethnic influence. But Thursday night I couldn't help thinking of another excellent show at HOB, when Peaches played in 2009. I left Thursday's show, much like the Peaches gig, feeling shored up and artistically motivated by a woman singing about how it's okay to be different, to sacrifice things for art, and to not give a fuck about what anyone else thinks of you.

KEEP THE HOUSTON PRESS FREE... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Shey is an experienced blogger, social media expert and traveler. She studied journalism at Oklahoma State University before working as a full-time reporter for Houston Community Newspapers in 2005. She lived in South Korea for three years, where she worked as a freelancer.
Contact: Brittanie Shey