Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Keyshia Cole brings down the house in Newark; Sexier side of Keri Hilson?

It's no coincidence that Keyshia Cole's latest album is entitled, "A Different Me."

If you check her out in concert you will get a much different Keyshia Cole than the one we were introduced to 2005.

I've seen Keyshia Cole in concert on a number of occasions, but tonight at the NJ Performing Arts Center she gave it her all and put on one hell of a performance.

She's an amazing singer, but we already knew that. What surprised me tonight was her stage presence and ability to do some dancing. Keyshia Cole dancing? Is this the same dude-bashing, finger-pointing and around the way chick that we came to embrace??

In her hour set, Keyshia did these hits from her first three albums:

"A Different Me": "Make Me Over," "Playa Cardz Right," "Please Don't Stop," "You Complete Me," "No Other," "Oh-oh, Yeah-yea," "Playa Cardz Right," "Brand New," "Thought You Should Know," "Trust"

"Just Like You": "Last Night," "Got to Get My Heart Back," "Let It Go," "I Remember," "Shoulda Let You Go," "Heaven Sent," "Didn't I Tell You,"

"The Way It Is": "Love," "I Changed My Mind," "I Should Have Cheated," "(I Just Want It) To Be Over"

Her supporting cast on this tour included Keri Hilson, The-Dream and Bobby Valentino.

Bobby V kicked off the show. If you were a few minutes late or if you decided to grab a drink outside, you may have missed his 20-minute set. The crowd, which was 85 percent female, was really into his performance, surprisingly. He performed popular hits "Slow Down," "Beep," "Pimpin' All Over the World" and "Tell Me." He also performed a new track -- "Hands on Me" -- from his third solo album, The Rebirth, and he gave fans a taste of his part on Lil Wayne's "Mrs. Officer."

The barely 5-foot-tall Bobby Valentino made sure to finish out strong by taking off his shirt to the delight of some of the ladies in the attendance. Who told him he was LL Cool J? He even did some grinding and humping the ground, for a few extra cheers.

Miss Keri Baby followed Bobby V and seemed to try to upstage him by getting a little freaky herself. Her performance on "Slow Dance" with one of her dancers was enough to make your mouth hang open in surprise. [watch below] Let's just say they were doing a lot more than "slow dancing." She definitely stole a page out of the book of Janet Jackson aka "Miss Jackson, if you're nasty." In addition, Hilson performed "Turnin' Me On," "Get Your Money Up," "Energy," "Intution" and "How Does It Feel." She also played with covering SWV's "Weak" and Mary J. Blige's "Take Me As I Am."

And speaking of covers, The-Dream was the final performer before the headliner and during his set he performed Michael Jackson's "Dirty Diana." Nice job. The "radio killer" also performed hits from his first two albums including "Shawty is Da Shit," "Ditch That..," "My Love," "Fast Car," "I Love Your Girl," "Falsetto," "Rockin' That Shit" and "Take You Home 2 My Mama."

The Dream was probably the one performer that the show could have done without. His dancers stole most of his shine when they were on stage. He tried to get screams from the crowd by groping himself and grinding while laying on his back singing, "Falsetto."

There's no question that The Dream makes some hot songs. But fans in Newark were certainly not giving away any screams or panties to people who didn't deserve them - that includes The Dream. The strongest part of his show was when the stage filled with smoke for his performance of "Walking on the Moon."

Aside of The Dream's so-so performance, the show was great. If this concert is coming to a town near you, definitely check it out. It's worth it.

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