SINGAPORE: Dust off your shoulder pads and prepare to relive the 80s, when popular outdoor retro concert Retrolicious returns on October 8 at Fort Canning Park, with a brand new lineup of acts.
80s pop icon Belinda Carlisle, best known for her hit songs like “Heaven Is a Place on Earth” and “Summer Rain”, will perform at the concert along with pop duo Bananarama and The Human League.
Odd as it may be, I went over with friends to Billboard Live in Tokyo Midtown to see … Sheila E last night. I’m not sure, but most of the words sounded like Christian music. It got better towards the end with a pop song which sounded like a Hong Kong Pepsi commercial I remember, a quite nice screaming guitar rock number, and another with what I could swear is the music to that song that goes “don’t you wish your girlfriend was hot like me?” Her voice is … well, I’ve heard better range and depth on the street in Akihabara … but, hey, she’s a drummer. The drink I had tasted like those cheap popsicles that come as liquid in the long plastic bag that you might get at Walmart … before you freeze it. E had a nicer macha liqueur creamy thing. We had great seats and Billboard is a beautiful club.
We arrived at Tokyo Midtown and located Billboard Live an hour before the early 7pm show. The place is striking! This is not your typical club or concert venue. Membership is required to get a table, but you see it is well worth it as the formally attired staff lead you to your seat and present the menu. A waiter … er, waits near you and promply presents actual china and silverware. The food was superb … even better than very many fine restaurants in town. We had some calimari and sesame glazed salmon with asparagus holandaise and some fanciful and delicious drinks.
The show itself was amazing and slammed me right back into the 80’s as the Japanese crowd surprised me to no end. The actually abandoned their natural reserve, stood up in their suits … and sang/screamed along with the music. HoJo had them going with the interactive choruses and such. The concert was too short for my liking, about 120 minutes, but the quality was present in abundance. HoJo still has the voice though his appearance has changed over the years. He was sporting the pointy Japanese style shoes and wearing bright sequins everywhere … and the hair … well, spiked in the crazy professor from Back to the Future style (including hairline – like I’m one to talk). A more composed picture of him is a better exemplar.
After the show we picked up some signed cd’s of both new and old (I don’t know what happened to my Human’s Lib from long ago). All-in-all, T’was a most delightful experience.