Tracy Bonham/Jp, Chrissie and the Fairground Boys

The starting of a new adventure. Being a Pretenders fan, I’m always excited when I see the letters CH when referring to a first name last name. So when Jp Jones, Chrissie Hynde and the Fairground boys were announced to be coming to the city, I new I HAD to go.

Fueled by the numerous good reviews from friends who had seen the band perform live in L.A. and my own joyous feelings after viewing the KCRW show on the internet, I knew this was going to be something I wouldn’t forget and through the graces of a VERY good friend my ticket was secured.

Fanatical and obsessed may be one way to describe my feelings, the show started at around Seven and I arrived at about One. Sat in the Cafe read a Star Wars comic and enjoyed my time.

By the time the show was starting I was surrounded by many of my Pretenders friends, ready to experience this very familiar but, very different event that is Chrissie Hynde. Not too familiar with JP Jones I was totally clueless about what exactly I was going to be seeing and hearing.

Tracy Bonham’s opening set was the perfect way to start this show, sitting in seats that weren’t my own my friend and I reveled in our guest sets no more than five feet from the stage, designated for “Shakira”. We were instantly impressed with Bonham’s voice, violin playing and inventive use of simple themes to get across points that are the subject of such examples of the normative flow of life. Sensual with a splash of humor and a tinge of cynicism Bonham’s writing style is not to unlike what were were going to see next.

There’s always a tinge of unexplainable excitement when I see Chrissie Hynde and tonight was going to be no different. As she walked out and took the stage with the boys I found myself smiling ear to ear, along with my friend and a very excited Sandra Bernhard. They took their instruments and sat down and smiled at the audience and Hynde uttered that phrase I’m so used to hearing: ‘Are you ready girls?’

Starting with “If You Let Me” the show was already a success, the small venue with the sound of the music echoing through it was just what we were all waiting for. Rarely do I have the experience of instant love but, it surely came over me the moment Jp Jones opened his mouth. I knew what Hynde sounded like already and I had heard the song before but, something about being there and hearing him made the whole of Fidelity! make more sense.

I suddenly got how their voices both opposed and complimented each other, an artistic foreshadowing of the content of the album. How this intensely personal album, about their relationship was being shared with us. Not just as a man and a woman coming together but, two creative forces finding a passage through the other, and event that’s not very common and even more rarely viewed by the human eye.

And as Hynde cooed: “Cause I’m not fine by myself” I could see in JP’s face a total recognition of himself in what she was singing. To hear their song being sung in front of these people, I could see everything making sense.

As the two went through the song it inflated higher and higher into a moment of complete triumph at the end (as every song would).

The band continued through their songs, a setlist that took as through want – Fairground Luck, Understanding – Fidelity and the harsh realization of ultimate loss – Perfect lover amongst others. It’s hard to fully put into words what exactly what was going through the room that night. Somewhat of a calm electricity that went through each and everyone of us, every note, every lyric and every look was something different and more exciting. Whether it was Hynde’s Harmonica Solo, Patrick’s slick and wonderful licks or JP’s powerful assertions, everything felt perfect but, not so versed that it seemed like a recital.

At the end of the night, I found myself totally sold on the project, it didn’t matter what I heard from there on I knew this was going to be an album that would become an instant classic to me. The funny thing about good music is that often times one has to look for it but, every once in a while it falls into your lap and you’re blessed with something genius without having to beseech it.

Fidelity! Promises to be more interesting than anything else around and I for one can not wait; though my patience may be an act of Fidelity itself.


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