Concert Review: Sara Bareilles at the BOA Pavilion in Boston, MA
Reviewed by: Holly Kalinski
No remnants of Hurricane Irene were present on Tuesday on the waterfront at Boston’s Bank of America Pavilion for Sara Bareilles. However, the mix of cool night air and the amazingly talented Bareilles combined as the perfect storm for an entertaining evening for many excited fans.
The cute, bouncy 31-year-old Bareilles hopped around the stage pleasing crowd members with many songs from her latest album, Kaleidoscope Heart, a quick tribute to the late Amy Winehouse with her cover of The Zutons “Valerie,” and a full band performance of Mumford & Sons “Little Lion Man” complete with accordion and Bareilles on the tambourine.
Though sporting a short polka dot dress and a large grin, Bareilles made it very clear she is not just a pretty face. “Parents have stopped bringing kids to my shows because of my mouth, I can’t believe it took me that long to say fuck!,” she exclaimed to cheers while drinking brandy from a Solo cup.
Along with her pretty face comes major musical talent. Bareilles rarely left her grand piano during the show but once to play guitar. Her strong live vocals, which are even better than on her albums, captivated the wide variety of people in the pavilion audience. To my left were four 12-year-old girls giddily dancing in their seats, while to my right was a 20-something man in plaid shorts who at first seemed dragged against his will, but I noticed later that knew every single word as he sang along.
While Bareilles played mostly songs from her Kaleidoscope Heart album, she also included some older songs as well from her first two albums. The best performance of the night was an a capella rendition of her song “Gravity” off of her album Little Voice. As Bareilles stood alone on stage she sang: “Set me free, leave me be/I don’t want to fall another moment into your gravity.” Bareilles was able to silence a crowd with only her empowering voice and raw emotion.
It is apparent her fans love her by the large turnout and their response to her jokes about her opening bands and her humble beginnings as a musician. Bareilles easily makes you feel that this is the best show she’s ever performed, that Boston is her favorite town, and, just like you, she has been through hard times.
No mention, however, was made of the Indiana State Fair stage collapse. Bareilles and her band played on the stage right before the tragedy. Though not announced during the show, Bareilles and WBMX Boston made a block of tickets available for a $10 minimum donation two weeks before the show with all proceeds going towards the Central Indiana Community Foundation/Indiana State Fair Remembrance Fund.
While Bareilles did not talk about the tragedy, it was clear that she was very moved by the crowd’s response, “This is one of those milestone concerts. We are so glad to be working as performers. Thanks for supporting us.”
Sara is out on tour through October both supporting Sugarland and some headlining dates. Check out all her upcoming dates here.