Friday, May 24, 2024

Concert Review: JoJo

It was my first visit to the Culture Room in Fort Lauderdale, and standing on the indoor balcony just a few arms’ distance from a revived pop star was certainly not what I had envisioned as I waited outside in a line that nearly reached Oakland Park Blvd.

An hour of millennial throwbacks sent my head bopping from side to side in a fit of nostalgia that made me anxious for the once 12-year-old girl who had graced us with her Billboard chart topping “Leave (Get Out)” before disappearing from the limelight due to restrictive record label complications.

JoJo took the stage, and suddenly 2003 was staring me in the face with crimped hair and a crop top. But her first note snapped me back into reality, to 2015 and to the mature young woman that stood there on that stage in the perfectly intimate setting for a comeback.

She joked about her claim to fame—the love songs she wrote over a decade ago—because how could a preteen possibly know the ins and outs of real love? She deemed CDs ancient but was thrilled to learn that fans still held onto her first two albums.

The whole evening was filled with her humility—that kind of genuine appreciation that made you forget this wasn’t her first time taking the stage.

Now 24, JoJo realizes she’s one of the lucky ones. “I found what I want to do for the rest of my life,” she said before performing “When Love Hurts” from her new tringle. Her passion for music oozed out of her with each heartfelt note, and her free spirit danced across the stage with some hip shaking and an effervescent smile.

After 60 minutes of vocal splendor, the singer left the room but was summoned back for an encore performance with the crowd’s riveting repetition of her name.

JoJo is set to release her third album in early 2016, and with a vocal range wide enough to send Gwen, Adam, Blake and Pharrell’s chairs spiraling off their tracks, it’s clear that the music industry has plenty of room for JoJo to take a permanent residence in its spotlight.

Set List:

Baby It’s You

Breezy

The Happy Song

Leave (Get Out)

Anything

Good Ol’

Like That

Too Little Too Late

Boy Without A Heart

Marvin’s Room (Can’t Do Better)- remixed Drake cover

Demonstrate

Planes- Jeremih cover

When Love Hurts

Save My Soul

Say Love

Encore:

I Am

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