Concert Review: Chrisette Michele performs at B.B. King Blues Club, announces new album title

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On Thursday, June 25th, R&B songstress and vocal powerhouse Chrisette Michele performed for her adoring and supportive NYC fanbase at the historic B.B. King Blues Club in Manhattan. Before I go into the detail about the amazing show, I have some exciting information to share that apparently no one else ran to the internet with? I did a quick Twitter and Google search and came up with nothing:

Chrisette announced the (working) title of her upcoming fifth studio album: Milestone. She went on to explain the reasoning behind the title being that she’s at a turning point, milestone moment in her career. She’s started her own record label, clothing line, and is continuing with her very successful blog RichHipster.biz. Chrisette went on to gush about the content of the album, calling it some of her best and most emotionally honest work yet and divulged that the topics will be hard hitting and include references to current events such racial injustices, such as in Baltimore. Needless to say, we anxiously anticipate the release of the album and Chrisette hopes it can drop this fall. She says she has recorded the music for all the songs with her phenomenal band, and all that’s left is for her to finish her vocals; which she said she had to come home to New York to do (L.A. just wasn’t cutting it for her; no shade). Watch videos of her recording it, such as the one below, on Rich Hipster TV.

Now, onto the show. Want a one word review?: WOW. It’s been two years since my last Chrisette concert on June 11, 2013 in celebration of the release of her last album, Better (lets not talk about how Chrisette pulled me onto stage to vogue during that show – just because I was YASSSing her – meanwhile I had no idea what to do; thankfully my friend Aishah saved me) and at this show, I was once again reminded of how phenomenal she is. Not only that, but as a vocalist, she impresses me more and more each time. She gets better and better. I will take y’all through the highlights of the setlist, beginning with my favorite moment: when she sang the classic “Summertime” – first in jazz standard tradition, then she switched it to the original, classical, operatic interpretation. It was completely unexpected and she wowed the entire crowd. She transformed her voice completely; it was unrecognizable and she exuded talent. Though, I guess that’s one of the perks of being a trained, college-educated musician! Here’s a short clip:

Other highlights of the night included an energetic performance of “Love Won’t Leave Me Out” from Better, which made me love the song even more, and a dramatic take on the Jazmine Sullivan-penned “I Don’t Know Why, But I Do” from Let Freedom Reign. Again, the live performance of this song, too, improved upon the album version.

Perhaps the best performance of the night (aside from “Summertime”) though was “Blame It On Me.” The song has always been one she puts a lot of soul into live, but this particular time, she took it to church and even shed a few tears. She took her time with the song and brought it home in the ending, breaking it down flawlessly. I wish I had recorded it.

Other notable moments include performances of her first single “If I Have My Way” and gospel classic “Total Praise” – both performed alongside her background singers. Another was the live rendition of “Super Chris,” lifted from her Lyricist’s Opus EP.

New York loves their hometown girl, Chrisette Michele and the feeling is mutual. I’ve only seen her live here at home, and while I am sure she delivers in whatever city she is performing, but every performance Chrisette delivers in NYC feels extra special. Last week’s show was no different, and I can’t wait for the next one. A true hometown show, on Long Island, would be great as well, Chrisette! 😉

Below, watch the ONLY videos online from the show, courtesy of my friend Aishah! Follow Aishah on Twitter, Instagram and YouTube, too!

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