Saturday, November 12, 2011

UTN1 Shines Once Again In Virginia USA

From an entertainer’s perspective, a good concert happens when the performance has gone smoothly, according to plan and expectations. Attending fans are pleased and left with a warm feeling. That also means there are no hiccups or at least noticeable ones. A great concert takes it one step further. There’s nothing quite like a great live show. It's fair to say that not all concerts are the same, some go to party, others to dance. Younger concert goers look for something, older ones look for another, but they both are looking for a good time. Savvy performances mange to draw in everyone in the arena to their live show.

Living in the States for more than a decade, I have seen many cover bands for Arabic music, some were good, some left something to be desired. Such bands mange to bribe the crowd by playing classic Arabic songs that everyone knows and thus sings along to. None of those bands I saw have their own original songs that people memorize.

But all that changed last night. I attended a concert by the Iraqi pop/rock band UTN1 in Tyson Corner, Virginia and it was some experience. First and fromst, UTN1 is an Iraqi band that performs in Arab countries so they know what songs to play and when to play them. Timing is key in Arabic concerts. Kicking off their concert with their all too popular original song Jamila that was an instant hit with the Arab audience and the curios American listener. There was enrgey all over the room as people starting to get cozy and comfortable.

Following this song for half a dozen of Iraqi folklore songs that all Iraqis memorize and appreciate. This brought the best of the concert goers, they flocked to the dance stage and did not stop. Such crowd pleasers" At this post point, everyone jumped in and moved to the beat. And Iraqi group dance circles started to from and welcome all attendees. It must help Hassan to see this kind of energy because then he has to match it and so did Shant on the drum. I have seen performance before not sure what to make of it when their audience gets animated, but UTN1. The band seemed to have a plan and everything happened at their concert seems to be part of the expectations.

The offering of the concerts varied to accommodate the types of Arab concert goers, there are the mellow songs where the lyrics are the show, and there are the upbeat get up and dance ones. Frankly the band won extra credit in my book when they performed this classic Egyptian oldie (video). There are those new age listeners appreciate and there are other songs that have been around for decades and continue to be popular. This is one concert not to miss from a band that knows how to work work up a crowd.

P.S. I was hoping the band will have some CDs and merchandise to allow me and my friends to bring the concert home with us.




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