Category Archives: Show Review

Alex Aiono Brings “Feels Like Tour” to NYC

Alex Aiono slayed his sold out “Feel Like Tour” stop at Highline Ballroom in NYC!   With his good friend and collaborator Trinidad Cardona kicking the show off, the duo brought the house down and made sure the crowd had the night of their lives.


Alex sang and danced his way through his high energy set with a huge smile on his face the entire time!   The energetic crowd was singing along to every word.  The show was one nonstop dance party from start to finish, and Alex did an awesome job keeping the crowd involved.   He even brought up a special fan and serenaded her on his acoustic guitar halfway through the set.


Alex got his start by posting his now iconic mashups of songs on YouTube.  He included his Drake/Nicky Jam “One Dance/Hasta el Ananecer” mashup as part of the set, and it was 🔥🔥🔥.   We love that Alex has the moves, the vocals, and producing skills.  He is the total package.


We’ve been hearing “Does It Feels Like Falling” absolutely everywhere lately, and judging by the reaction that Alex got during his sold out show, you’ll be seeing and hearing much more from him soon!  We can’t wait to see him on his next tour, and we can see him selling out even bigger venues around the country.


Pick up a copy of “Does It Feel Like Falling” featuring Trinidad Cardona on iTunes now!


Be sure to follow Alex Aiono & Secret Fangirls for more updates!

AJR Play 1st Sold Out Hometown Show At NYC’s Gramercy Theatre

AJR have been killing it lately.  Their latest single, “Weak,” has gotten over 100 million plays on Spotify and is climbing up the charts.   Their first major headlining tour, the “What Everyone’s Thinking” Tour, has had sold out shows across the country.  The tour rolled into Adam, Jack and Ryan’s hometown of NYC over the weekend for a two night stand at the Gramercy Theatre.

AJR have played Gramercy Theatre in the past, but their show on Saturday night was their first ever hometown show that sold out. And it didn’t just sell out – the show sold out so quickly that a second date was added on Sunday.   How successful has the “What Everyone’s Thinking” Tour been?  They were nearly out of their stock of merch, with a few shows left to go!

If you’ve been to an AJR show, you know that things can “get weird,” as Jack told the crowd.  For their first big headlining tour, they brought out all the stops.  They are by far one of the most energetic acts we’ve ever seen on stage.  They honed their skills performing on the streets of NYC, where they learned how to win over a crowd. Jack never stops moving, flailing across the entire stage in a continual dance as he switches from playing the Maschine to the drums to the Melodica to the guitar.   All three brothers took turns playing the drums, even hopping into the crowd at one point.

One of the things we love most about AJR is how true they stay to themselves and to their music.   After playing “Let The Games Begin,” the band told the crowd how the music industry had tried to change them and told them they couldn’t do things.   “You can’t get that sound on the radio.  You can’t record in your living room.”  Even Jack’s hat was met by criticism.  Through it all, they stood by what they believed in.  We saw quite a few fans (including a mini Jack) rocking “the hat” in the crowd.

We love that AJR are confident in their sound and their growing fanbase proves that you don’t have to fit into a certain mold to make good music and connect with people. When they wrote the songs for their latest EP, “What Everyone’s Thinking,” they wanted to make songs that were very honest and the reaction has been unbelievable.

Adam told the crowd more about their songwriting process – the brothers write countless songs together, then let them sit for a few months.  The ones they like that “pass the test of time” get the go ahead, while others get shelved.  One track that has stood the test of time, and that the band still loves to play live is “Infinity.”  They also did a new rendition of fan favorite track “Woody Allen,” turning it into an acoustic song with a heavy kick drum.   Ryan said he was inspired to write the song after watching Woody Allen movies for film class: he wanted to capture that feeling of how he always gets the girl in the end.

They incorporated some of their remixes in the set, turning “I Got No Strings” and “Tiptoe Through The Tulips” into tracks you wanted to dance to.  They also created a “New York” remix on stage, breaking it down piece by piece to show the crowd how they create their unique sound.

AJR closed out their set with their breakout single, “I’m Ready,” which had the entire room dancing and clapping along.   They rolled out a giant banner printed to look like Jack’s Maschine, which he started to play.   The band came back out for one more song, their current hit “Weak.”  We got chills hearing every person in the room singing along.

It was by far the craziest AJR show we’ve been to!  The enthusiastic crowd knew every word,  loudly singing along from start to finish.  It’s amazing to see how far they’ve come (they’ve been performing together for 12 years!) and to see such an incredible response to their music.  There’s no one else quite like them.  AJR,  you just keep doing you.

Setlist:
I’m Not Famous/Thirsty
The Green and The Town
Call My Dad
I Got No Strings
Come Hang Out
Woody Allen
Tiptoe Through The Tulips
Let The Games Begin
Pitchfork Kids
Infinity
Remix
Turning Out
No Grass Today
I’m Ready
Weak

Be sure to follow AJR & Secret Fangirls for more updates!

The Vamps and Citizen Four Perform at Sold Out Gramercy Theatre In NYC

It’s hard to believe it’s been 3 years since The Vamps’ first headlining show (ever!) in NYC, at Gramercy Theatre back in February 2014.  James, Connor, Tristan and Brad have come a long way since then, selling out arenas like the O2 in London and dropping 2 albums along the way.  It’s been a while since the boys have had a headlining show in NYC, and we were thrilled to see them back at the Gramercy Theatre last night!

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The Vamps certainly know how to put on a high energy show – it’s impossible not to sing and dance along!  The enthusiastic crowd knew and sang along to every word, including their brand new single “All Night.”  Their set included songs from both albums, from “Can We Dance” to “Wake Up,”   and they brought out a special guest during “Somebody To You!”  Sabrina Carpenter, who is opening for The Vamps in Europe, joined the guys to sing Demi Lovato’s part.

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Brad told the crowd since he’s been in America for a while now, he’d caught on to some slang.  “Get ready because tonight is going to be ‘lit’ and you’re all going to get ‘turnt up.'”  (Imagine this with a British accent).  The band does an excellent job of getting the crowd involved, calling out fans in the audience and encouraging them to sing along.  Brad even jumped off stage near the end of the show to get closer to the fans!

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At the end of the night when the band left the stage, instead of the usual “encore” chants, the crowd broke out into an a cappella version of “All Night.”   Their singing morphed into The Vamps coming back on to play the song themselves.  It was a perfect ending that left everyone wanting more!

If you didn’t make it to the show last night, not to worry:  Brad promised that they would be back “very soon” and are going on tour in North America this Summer!   Stay tuned for the announcement coming soon!

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Our new favorite boyband, Citizen Four, kicked the night off in style with their sweet harmonies and smooth dance moves.  We’ve been singing their single “Testify” ever since.  The best way to describe it is 🔥🔥🔥.  Conner, Carson, Austin, and Josh are so much fun to watch live!  They had the crowd rocking and we’re sure they gained quite a few new fans after that performance!

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The Vamps Setlist:
Rest Your Love
Cheater
Can We Dance
Last Night
Wild Heart
Cecilia
Stay
Stolen Monents
Somebody To Love (with Sabrina Carpenter)
Wake Up
All Night

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Be sure to follow The Vamps, Citizen Four & Secret Fangirls for more updates!

Cam’s “Burning House” Tour Hits Highline Ballroom in NYC

We saw Cam for the first time in 2014 when she opened for Dan + Shay on their first headlining tour at Highline Ballroom in NYC.  Her set was so much fun (one of our favorite openers ever!) and we knew we’d be hearing much more from her in the future.  Since that show, Cam signed with Sony, released her debut album “Untamed,” and had her first #1 single, “Burning House.”    Cam came full circle last week when she came back to Highline Ballroom on her first headlining tour, the “Burning House” Tour.

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Cam played every track from “Untamed” during her set.  The enthusiastic crowd sang along from start to finish.  We love that Cam took the time to introduce every track, telling the crowd anecdotes and the inspiration for writing each song.  She has a knack for storytelling, evident in both her songwriting and her on stage banter.  Every story was heartfelt or hilarious, or a little bit of both.  She reminded us of another blonde country star: Dolly Parton!

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Cam had one of the coolest sets we had ever seen, turning the stage into a beautiful house in the woods complete with forest creatures and flashing stars.  It got even cooler when a blacklight made it seem to glow in the dark about halfway through the set.

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Cam played some new material during the show, including the head-banging “Man Hunt,” which showed that Cam can totally rock.   She closed her set with the hilarious “Fireball Whiskey,” which Cam had actually pitched to the company.   She said they declined since the track “does not promote responsible drinking.”

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The night ended with Cam’s breakout single, “Burning House,” which turned into a very loud singalong.  The “Burning House” Tour runs through December.  Click here for tour dates!  Don’t miss your chance to see this rising star.

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Setlist:
My Mistake
Want It All
Hungover on Heartache
Half Broke Heart
Mayday
Sweet Dreams (cover)
Old Men, Young Women (cover)
No One Gets to Heaven
Untamed
Runaway Train
Cold in California
Country Ain’t Never Been Pretty
Man Hunt
Village
Fireball Whiskey
Encore:
Burning House

5SOS Sell Out Madison Square Garden on “Sounds Live, Feels Live” World Tour

We can officially say “5SOS sold out MSG!!!”  That’s a feat of epic proportions, especially for a band that hasn’t been around that long.  It’s hard to believe that just two short years ago the guys were headlining the nearby Best Buy Theater, which holds about 2,000 people.  Luke, Ashton, Calum, and Michael played every song we could have asked for on this tour and you could hear the entire arena singing every word!

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The band played their new single, “Girls Talk Boys,” for the first time live at MSG.  The track had just dropped the day of the show, but fans already knew all of the words and kept singing like they had been all night.  The performance of the funky song saw lead singer Luke Hemmings jump on the piano for a bit – cue the swoons.

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Drummer Ashton took the time to remind the crowd to always follow their dreams, saying he went from playing in his garage to playing in the legendary Madison Square Garden.  He also said the crowd was the loudest he’d ever heard, despite having played many other shows.

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Before going into the first verse of “Jet Black Heart” solo, Michael soaked up the applause from the crowd.  Just when you thought he was going to keep going, the crowd just got louder and louder.  It was one of the most energetic crowds we’ve ever seen at MSG (or anywhere for that matter!)  We’re so proud of how far 5SOS have come so far and can’t wait for what’s next!

Setlist:
Carry On
Hey Everybody
Money
Voodoo Doll
Don’t Stop
Disconnected
Long Way Home
Outer Space
Waste The Night
Vapor
Amnesia
Castaway
Jet Black Heart
End Up Here
Good Girls
Girls Talk Boys
Permanent Vacation
What I Like About You
She Looks So Perfect (Encore)

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The “Sounds Live, Feels Live” Tour will be hitting venues across North America all Summer long!  Check out the dates here and get your tickets now!  Make sure to pickup a copy of “Girls Talk Boys” on iTunes now so you can singalong!

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Be sure to follow 5SOS & Secret Fangirls for more updates!

Dierks Bentley Kicks Off “Somewhere On A Beach Tour” in Holmdel, NJ

Summer concert season is officially here!  Dierks Bentley got the season off to a rocking start last night when the first stop on the “Somewhere On A Beach” Tour hit the PNC Bank Arts Center in Holmdel, NJ.  He set a very high standard for the rest of the shows we’ll go to this Summer.  It was a high energy show from start to finish, and his 90 minute set seemed to fly by!  Dierks gets an A+ in fan interaction, constantly hi-fiving and pausing for selfies during the set without missing a beat.

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We got an exclusive first listen of Dierks’ new album, “Black,” in his mobile listening tour bus.  (yes, we fangirled hard at getting to be on an actual tour bus).  If you’re a black card member you can get on the bus too!  You can pre-order the album and get a card at the show if you don’t have one already.  We pre-ordered “Black” without hearing a single track from the album, knowing it would be awesome, and it even exceeded our expectations.

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Opening acts Tucker Beathard, Cam, and Randy Houser set the tone for the evening with their lively sets.  Cam’s set showed the range of her music, from fun tracks like “Go Get ‘Em Cam!” and “Country Ain’t Never Been Pretty,”  to her emotional hit “Burning House” and new single “Mayday.”  The singalong and cheering during Randy’s performance of “Like A Cowboy” was one of the loudest and craziest we’ve ever heard.  New Jersey country fans, we are proud.

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On to the main event:  DIERKS!!   He encouraged the crowd to tip it on back and get a little sideways, free and easy.   The crowd was certainly there to get their good time on.  His set included hits from all of his albums along with new material from “Black.”  Some die hard fans (ourselves included) already knew the words to the new tracks like “What The Hell Did I Say” and even the title track which was as steamy live as the brand new video!

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One of the more emotional moments during the show came during “I Hold On,” which is in memory of Dierks’ father.  As the crowd loudly sang along, he told them that was always his favorite part of the night.  Later, Dierks decided to get a little closer to the audience and jumped from the stage into the middle of the crowd to make his way to a stage in the back.  He was joined by Cam and Randy for “Take It Easy.”  From the main stage to the B stage, Dierks’ knows how to get every single part of the crowd involved and  keep them entertained even if he’s not right in front of them.

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We almost don’t want to ruin it for you, so maybe stop reading this if you’re going to the tour.  During the encore Captain Dierks came out on an actual Dude Air plane.  Cam and Randy joined him on stage one last time, before members of the crew ran out, some in their Riser flight attendant outfits.  After the show, Dierks stayed on stage and signed anything people handed or tossed to him for a good 10 minutes as “Wanted Dead or Alive” was pumping through the venue. As if we didn’t love him enough already.   Check out the dates for the “Somewhere On A Beach” tour HERE and get your tickets now!

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Setlist:
Up On The Ridge
Free And Easy (Down The Road I Go)
Tip It On Back
Am I The Only One
5-1-5-0
Say You Do
Lot Of Leavin’ Left To Do
What The Hell Did I Say
I Hold On
Every Mile A Memory
Black
Feel That Fire
Take It Easy (cover)
Freedom
Somewhere On A Beach
What Was I Thinkin’
Sideways
Drunk On A Plane

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Cole Swindell Celebrates “You Should Be Here” Album Release in NYC

NYC went country last night with Cole Swindell celebrating the release of his sophomore album, “You Should Be Here,” at the Gramercy Theatre.  If you’re a fan of Cole’s, of country music, or just having a good time, you should have been there.  His set was packed with hits from start to finish, including tracks from the new album and his record-breaking debut.  It was one of the most fun shows we’ve been to in a while, where we could singalong from start to finish.  The sold out crowd was ready to party, and knew all of the new songs despite the album only having been out for 2 days.

Cole got his start in Nashville as a songwriter, cutting tracks for Luke Bryan, Thomas Rhett, Florida Georgia Line and more before signing his own record deal with Warner Brothers.  He played his versions of “Get Me Some Of That” and “This Is How We Roll,” leading into his first #1 as an artist, “Chillin’ It.”

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Cole told the crowd he grew up on 90s country music, which made him fall in love with the genre.  He covered Kenny Chensey’s “Don’t Happen Twice,” which was the first song he’d ever played for an audience back in college.  He had a full circle moment getting to sing that song with Kenny on stage last year.  Cole thanked the fans throughout the show, saying that they’re the reason he is where he is and “the reason I do all of this.”  Country artists are some of the most grateful and generous artists we’ve seen and it’s because of the close connection they have with their fans.

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Highlights of his set included “Flatliner,” which Cole recorded with Dierks Bentley, and his new single “Middle of a Memory.”  Cole’s performance of the title track from the album, “You Should Be Here,” was an emotional moment.

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Cole ended the night with a 3-song encore that included a bonus track from the new album, “Hoppin’,” which you can get on iTunes.  He took the crowd to church with “No Can Left Behind,” which he said was already one of his favorites to play live.  It’s a JAM.  The track has an old-school country sound and feel, a welcome throwback in the set. Cole closed out the show with his hit “Ain’t Worth The Whiskey,” which was one loud singalong from start to finish.  He let the crowd take it home as he held up an American flag sourced from the front row.


Setlist

Down Home Boys
Hey Y’all
Brought To You By Beer
Up
Hope You Get Lonely Tonight
Middle of A Memory
Get Me Some Of That (Thomas Rhett)
This Is How We Roll (FGL & Luke Bryan)
Chillin’ It
Real Good Man (Tim McGraw)
Don’t Happen Twice (Kenny Chesney)
Broke Down
Stars
Let Me See Ya Girl
Flatliner
You Should Be Here
(Encore)
Hoppin’
No Can Left Behind
Ain’t Worth The Whiskey

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Be sure to follow Cole Swindell & Secret Fangirls for more updates!