Monday, May 23, 2011

Aloe Blacc Plays Detroit Bar

A line waiting for the Aloe Blacc show stretched clear past the doughnut store at the edge of the Detroit Bar parking lot, waiting eagerly to attend the sold-out show. The Laguna Niguel local artist attracted over 350 people through the threshold of the Costa Mesa bar this evening

Opening for the headliner was Tutu Sweeney & the Brother Band, another local act based in Los Angeles. On drums was Blacc’s talented drummer Te’Amir Sweeney, who eventually played back-to-back sets. The mix of reggae, jazz, and soul was enough to warm up the crowd that was beginning to secrete sweat because of the close quarters.

Aloe Blacc jumped onto the platform in front of his many fans, and kept a fluid movement on stage all evening. Adorned in a bright tangerine button-up collared shirt and fedora, Blacc radiated a positive vibe during his whole set. Reaching out to his many fans, Blacc crooned, “Give me a soul clap!” Shadowy hand immediately shot into the air, clapping to the beat. As the night continued, Blacc’s political passion rang loud during his hit, “I Need a Dollar,” so much that the crowd began passing dollar bills towards the stage and into Blacc’s empty hand.

By the end, the venue was filled to the brim with soulful fans who couldn’t help but lean and bob and dance to the beat of a heavy bassline. After a brief interlude from the talented band backing Blacc, the vocalist returned to stage one more time to offer an encore of two songs, including one of the most soulful remixes of, “Billie Jean,” ever heard before. The night ended short, right around midnight, but the groovy tunes of Blacc quickly shifted towards the DJ’s funky disco dance music that collided with colorful beams of flashing light on the thinning dancefloor. A few disgruntled members of the crowd wanted more from the musician and his set, but most went home with some vinyl, a t-shirt, and a smile on their face.

Set list:


Hey Brother

Hey Brother Reprise

You Make Me Smile

Femme Fatale

Green Lights

Good Things

Miss Fortune

If I


Soul Train



Billie Jean

Loving You Is Killing Me

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