Alicia Keys Just Wants to Play Her Piano!

Alicia Keys
The Venue – Hammond, IN
September 13, 2008

Alicia Keys The Venue - Hammond, IN

Alicia Keys is one of the few artists that never ceases to amaze me with her talent. I can only dream of playing the piano as well as Ms. Keys. Her classical training is obvious when she breaks out the improvised interludes in between her songs. Before singing the first note of her debut hit song Fallin’, Alicia’s facial expression projected pure concentration and discipline while playing an interlude reminiscent of Mozart, Bach, Beethoven or Mendelssohn. Having been classically trained on the piano from age 5 to 18, I attempted (and failed!) to figure out which song this Baroque-sounding improvisational piece was leading into. Of course, as soon as Alicia belted out the word “I” and held it out (acappella) for what seemed like an eternity, I instantly recognized the song: Fallin’ – and that was that. Unfortunately, Alicia did not sit down to play her beautiful black grand piano until the fourth song in, and by then I had already taken my set – 6th row main floor! I was allowed to photograph her during the first two songs only, which were upbeat dance numbers. Man, what I would have given to take photos of Ms. Alicia Keys playing her piano! Next time maybe…

Keep reading after the jump to see more up close and personal photos of Alicia Keys and see her set list from last night’s sold out show. Admit it – if you were not there, you’re super jealous! Try and make sure that you get to see Alicia Keys AT LEAST once in your lifetime. She is truly one of the most talented songwriters, singers and pianists of our generation.

9/13/08 – Alicia Keys – Set List

Go Ahead

You Don’t Know My Name

Teenage Love Affair

Heartburn

I Need You

Karma (Spanish Harlem remix)

Superwoman

How Come You Don’t Call Me

Wreckless Love

Diary (featuring Jermaine Paul)

Tender Love (cover song featuring Jermaine Paul)

My Boo (solo w/o Usher)

Unbreakable

A Woman’s Worth

Like You’ll Never See Me Again

Fallin’

No One (Encore 1)

If I Ain’t Got You (Encore 2)

Contrary to what you might believe, Alicia Keys is no diva. But even is she was, she deserves to be! There were absolutely NO costume changes during her entire 90-minute set. She kept the same jeans, heels and butterfly bedazzled t-shirt on the whole time. By the end of her performance, her shirt was drenched in sweat, but she still did not change out of it. And God bless her for that. Alicia Keys sweats just like the rest of us! She is human… I have more respect for her as a musician than I do any other artist (except Tori Amos of course!). All around me last night, fans were talking incessantly about how talented – SO talented! – Alicia is. She can execute choreographed dance moves like the best of The Pussycat Dolls, but unlike those overtly sexual (read: raunchy) ladies, Alicia’s dancing is sensual. You definitely don’t get the impression that she is a former stripper or playmate. Alicia wants you to focus on her vocal chops and piano skills. While many of her pop star contemporaries believe that less is more, Alicia doesn’t flash any skin. Her t-shirt, jeans and heels combo won me over the second she walked on stage. I hope you enjoy the photos…I had a GREAT time taking them!

Click on the thumbnail to enlarge photos: