And now what we have all been waiting for (at least I have anyway)
Jordan Knight Concert Review, January 27,2004
If you have read this blog for a good amount of time, you know that every outing Tia and I have together is at the very least eventful and this was no exception. This is one we are sure to tell the kids. While I did not "Pull a Rick Springfield" I did have to be held back and in true Toya fashion, once again, I showed my behind. It is now official, if Toya goes to concerts, Toya sits in the back.
About 10 of us were sitting at a table in the middle of 3rd and Lindsley waiting for Jordan to go on and I really didn't know what to expect. I didn't have high expectations at all. I had heard from a few people that the shows they went to were fun and they enjoyed hearing all of the old songs again. This didn't help me because I had no interest in any of the old songs before Face the Music...so I thought. Jordan Knight and his hype man(?) took to the stage opening with "My Favorite Girl" and I took off running to the front. Look now, I was taken by surprise. That was my JOINT back in the day. I could not front on that. I just couldn't. But then after the excitement wore off and I got closer to the stage (one of the benefits of being 5'2, you can bob and weave easier.) I started to see what some of you have been talking about.
I've heard from some that Jordan's performances have been a bit awkward. Some have speculated that this was due to drunkenness and even one hinted that Jordan is showing early signs of MS (Anne, you were wrong for that one. So wrong...). While I can't verify the drunkenness I can say one thing: Jordan is straight up out of shape. The uptempos were awkward for him as Jordan tried to get sexy on us and I hate to say it but if he is planning on doing more uptempos he has got to get into better shape. Jordan's dance moves were reminiscent of that one uncle at everyone's barbecue dancing to the Gap Band talkin' about "Oh I still got it. Watch out there now!" To put it plainly yall, Jordan is chunky. Aren't we all though? I mean really. You pull out some of your pics from the New Kids days and tell me if you can still fit into your ruffled skirt with suspenders and then tell me you can find AND fit into those spandex biker shorts you used to wear under them with your Debbie Gibson hat. Guys, go find an old pair of Z-Caviricci pants and if you don't wear yourself out by the time you have buttoned every button and zipped every zipper, THEN bend your fat behind over and try and pin tuck them suckers. Come on yall. You won't do that because you are most likely not in denial. Sadly enough, Jordan is.
I am not saying that Jordan whipped out the old mustard zoot suit tonight and started doing the Roger Rabbit. However I would not have put this past his hype man, Chad. Chad has all the signs of a "why oh why wasn't I the 6th member" New Kids fan. He moved about 5 times faster than Jordan and talked about 5 times more than Jordan. For those of us that remembered back in the day when Jordan was making arenas go wild, we couldn't quite understand what he needed this guy for and frankly it was embarrassing and quite annoying. Maybe he still isn't used to not being up there without 4 other people with him. Don't get me wrong, the boy can still sang. He sang "If You Go Away" and because I never can tell how loud I am I said"Sing the song, Jordan, sing the song". To which he chuckled"SHE SAID, sing the song. That's funny." Then Chad said, "The lady on the right wants you to take her to church" and then Jordan bust out into this old down by the river type organ playin and sang a little gospel. I HOLLERED. A couple of times he messed up the words and looked me and we just laughed. I got the fuzzies. I am not gonna lie.
I do believe that Jordan has fallen victim to a "try and do what they do" state of mind that robs many talented people in the industry; that as well as having poor management in his corner(not Jim). Not only is he underrated by the majority, I truly believe that he underrates himself. As he sat down at the keyboard and started taking request, it was plain to see what Jordan's element is and that is in much more laid back, soulful music. He still has a beautiful voice and an amazing range. You could even tell it in his face that sitting at a piano and singing songs that he can truly take his time with is where he is most comfortable and he shines when he is in that place. I was watching him from the side of the stage wishing that he would feel more encouraged to do the music that he truly can and wants to do. Which leads me to my all time wish that finally came true and the reason why I am not allowed to sit less than 10 rows away at any concert ever.
I have always wanted to hear Jordan Knight sing a Luther Vandross song. I don't take kindly to remakes however I knew that if anyone could do a great job with a Luther remake, it would be Jordan. I have been on a mission with this for about 10 years, no lie. I used to intern at a recording studio and some producers were going to work on his album and I tried to convince them all to get him to remake "Other Side of the World". My cousin was recording in the same studio he was one day and called me to ask me which song I thought he should remake and told him. So when Jordan said he was taking request...please... I did not care. I was like this is it. Well apparently the girl next to me had the same idea because at the same exact time he sat down at the keyboard, we yelled "A House is Not a Home". He scrunched up his face and said"What?" We yelled again. And then my man said"Play it easy..." Well I clenched my fist and jumped up and down. I really showed out. We are talking 10 years yall. I couldn't contain myself. Then he said,"I don't know that one but I know this one." And with his eyes closed, Jordan Knight sang "Let me hold you tight. If only for one night". I am about to scream right now just typing this , I swear to you. My mouth flew open in disbelief and I just stood there. I had to get my friend Cassidy to hold my hand in fear that I would pull a "Rick Springfield" and tackle him out of sheer gratitude. I finally got my wish. After Jordan sang all of Luther Vandross' "If Only for One Night", I turned to the silent crowd and said "See yall don't nothin' about that. Yall can't even feel that. Yall don't know!" Yeah, true Toya fashion. Acted a fool. I made my way to the middle of the bar with the rest of my friends in fear that I would embarrass all of us any further and of course to call a few friends.
Jordan is one of the unsung champions of our day similar to Ralph Tresvant and Bryan Abrams. His talent is timeless and I truly hope that for him and for all of us that he finds his niche. This industry is run by the young, the restless and the trendy but you can't take away true God given talent. On top of that, he has such a sweet spirit. There are certain people that you see perform and you know that that is just what they are born to do. However it is up to them to really believe in that talent and where it comes from to be successful using it. I hope to one day see Jordan playing in a nice jazz club with maybe a drummer and a guitar player singing his heart out to songs he truly loves and believes in. And when the dust settles on all these fly by night artists, I hope to be able to take my daughter out to see one of the best singers in my generation. To me, Jordan will always have the right stuff. (I couldn't help it. I'm sorry. Call it corny, call it what you want, I had to make one last joke. Okay, I'm done.)