By Ray Anderson
Instead of dragging myself out to Amos’, standing in line for 3+ hours after already spending a hard 9 hours at work and getting further behind in my writing, I did something different. I decided to pass the baton to some devoted Jill Scott fans (or “Jillians”, as I’ve decided to call them) and have them share their experiences from the free concert. I figured it wouldn’t be fair for you to read “yeah, the show was good until she started doing the new stuff”, which is probably what I would have written (fair reporting is fair reporting, but bad music is bad music). So, here it is…reports from the front line from the Jill Scott concert. Thanks to those who decided to volunteer and help out.
“I went in with the idea that I would have to stand in line for an hour or so before getting into the venue. Little did I know the hour would turn into two, three, or maybe even four for some? I was definitely one of the lucky ones. I was able to push to the front of the line and force my way through. However, I still had to get past two individuals with a list, checking to see if each RSVP was valid. That process in itself was long, tedious and inconvenient, yet, individuals who did not have RSVPs were able to get in….SO REALLY, WHAT PURPOSE DID THE LIST SERVE????? That would explain why it was taking so long for the line to move. The “VIPs” were in line just as long as everybody else, and to top it off, VIP was still standing room only on the balcony, so what was the point? We were all in VIP….we were all standing (smile) in the midst of Ms Jill Scott, and once the concert began, all frustration left and she made us all feel Very Important.
So….Who Is Jill Scott???? She is an awesome performer, that’s who. Who would have thought a free concert would last almost two hours. She came out represented. She is classy songstress who knows how to entertain the crowd. I thoroughly enjoyed the concert”
“Who is Jill Scott? Big hair, big earrings, big voice…little dress? Last night she was all those things and much more. She was Beautifully Human…The Real Thing. That girl can sang! The concert last night was wonderful. That was my first time seeing Jill Scott perform in person and I was impressed. AND it was free. Thanks Bailey’s! Everybody can’t sing live, but Jill Scott was blowing. Her melodic sounds resonated through the crowd and they were loving it. People were singing the old familiar tunes and the new ones too. How did people learn all the words so fast? Anyway, it was hot and Ms. Scott was sweating all over the place, but nobody seemed to mind. She is a little nasty and a little freaky and the men definitely didn’t mind. Her poetic storytelling identified with women everywhere. After standing in line for over an hour, waiting for the show to start for another hour, my dogs burning (that would be feet), I still enjoyed the Experience…Jill Scott, The Real Thing. “
By Monica Nail
OK let me say that again WOW!!!!
That is the only way to describe the Jill Scott experience in one word.
Although parking was like finding a needle in a haystack, and you ran the risk of paying the tow man or the city of Charlotte for parking illegally just to go to a free concert after you left Amos’ feeling the high that the show provided it wouldn’t even matter, you still would do it all over again!
Walking up to Amos’ in a sea of afro’s and locks and neo soul heads you just know that you are truly in for a treat. Lines on both sides of the building for blocks down the street on some sides, all just to get a glimpse of the lovely Ms Scott herself. Now flats were my shoes of choice for the night since we knew the venue was standing room only. However, you could still see some sistas’ in stilettos and knee boots sacrificing comfort for cuteness just to wait in line for hours while Amos’ did what all Charlotte clubs are famous for doing, which is hold the line. Once the line did get moving you could see people come out of no where and jump to the front causing some to almost grease up their cheeks, kick off their heels, and tell the person next to them to “hold my earrings”. Thank heavens it was all smoke screens though, because I would have hated to miss what we were in store for. Upon reaching the front of the line you were greeted by Bailey’s reps in fitted brown dresses with what looked to have been a mechanical rolodex signing you in which was a bit time consuming and redundant since you had already registered you and your guest on-line but whatever. Especially considering you just waited in line for almost 2 1/2 hours and it was now well after 8:30 and the concert was supposed to start at 8:00pm but CPT was configured into that so we understood.
Once inside you knew to hurry and get your drink, rush to the rest-room, check your hair, and empty your bladder because once your feet were planted you were not moving unless you got a text saying the house was on fire or there was a tow truck aiming for your car. Once the basics were covered you got in where you could fit in and still see the center of the stage while the DJ kept welcoming you to the event even though he said it three times and each time he pronounced the name Bailey’s as Bally’s, but to each his own. Then after having meaningless conversation with the person next to you who you just knew was gonna be nestled next to you for the rest of the night with her purse in your back and/or side, it happened. The lights dimmed, the band came out, the crowd faced forward and you knew that this was it. This was the moment you used the last of your PTO at work just so you could get off work early for. This was the reason you obligated yourself to watch you sister’s kids this weekend just so she could watch yours tonight. This was the reason you risked bouncing a check just so you could buy an outfit for tonight knowing your direct deposit hadn’t hit your account yet. This was the moment you would formally be introduced to the lady of the evening, the one, the only, MS Jill Scott
She stepped out and the crowd lit up like Times Square on New Years Eve. She entered in her black baby doll mid thigh length dress, sheer fishnet stockings showing those “lets take a long walk” legs, and black ankle boots, feeding you sexiness and confidence all at the same time. Curly hair afro thick, makeup flawless, accessories none the less elegant. And then she looked up as she approached the mic, her eyes glistened as they reflected the light and she did it. She did the one thing that connects you to who she is on the inside, that lets you know anytime you see her that this sista’ is real she is genuine, she is the epitome of the strong black woman. She smiled. It even made the stage lights look dim and take a back-seat compared to her pearly white radiant smile. As the crowd responded in waves of yells and screams and applause it was confirmed at that very moment, Who is Jill Scott? Well she is the force that was gonna sweep you off your feet, pick you back up, dust you off, and knock you back down again for the next hour and 45 minutes.
She opened up with the first track off “The Real Thing” simply titled “Let It Be” and the fans, myself included, sang along like this song had been out since we were still wet behind the ears. It was like we were right there with her when she wrote it because we knew every note, every key, every run better than the back-up singers. Hell, she could have sent them home because we had their job in the bag for the night. She followed up with the guitar taking lead, teasing your senses letting you know “The Real Thing” would be the next track on the ride you were now full steam ahead on. Throughout the night she touched on some of her older material that is still in heavy rotation in my CD player with tracks like “A Long Walk”, the go-go hip swaying banger “Its Love”, “Whatever”, “Golden”, and oh my God what a version of “He Loves Me (Lyzel in E flat)”. Don’t tell anybody but I almost cried when she did the opera insert, her runs are sick! However the new tracks were represented and welcomed as well with mesmerizing performances of “Crown Royal” with a lil tongue action on an imaginary cup at the end, “My Love” that spoke to every woman that has ever been the other woman, “Celibacy Blues” that made you end your celibacy strike right then and there, “Whenever You’re Around” , “Hate On ME” which put ALL the haters on blast in the building, though I don’t think you could hate on the beautiful Ms Jilly from N Philly, and Lord what a version of “All I” remixed with bed that had me scrolling thru my phone when it was over to see who I could call up for the night if you know what I mean. The night ended with of course a full introduction of the band and a lil two step from Jill before making a graceful exit off stage leaving behind a building of onlookers in awe at what a woman she really is.
Afterwards, we all piled out the two exits drifting, not walking because we are all still on cloud nine form the spell binding, orgasmic, uplifting, empowering experience that we all just shared together. Now thank the Lord my car was still there even though I had just parked in front of a “we will tow your car” sign. it didn’t even matter I could have came outside to no car at all and paid to get it out of the garage for what I had just took part in. So as i sit here at work now and reflect on what felt like my first real orgasm last night I leave you with this:
For anyone who may still be skeptical and have lingering reservations about the new change brought about in the new style that Ms Scott exudes in her stride and her music now-a-days, it was truly confirmed beyond a shadow of a doubt. No questions asked, no second guessing, she is truly the exquisite, the undeniable, the truth, “THE REAL THING”