Beyonce at Barclays – Best Thing I Bought All Year
I’ve spent a lot of money this year and although I know Suze Orman wouldn’t approve, I’d have to say I’m pretty happy about most of my purchases. I found a $5 gem to squeeze out every last drop out of all my expensive beauty products, tracked down the perfect red lip color and even discovered a drugstore brand makeup remover gentle enough for my sensitive eyes, but my best purchase this year has to have been tickets to Beyonce’s Mrs. Carter Tour at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.
I have to admit, I haven’t seen very many live concerts. When it comes down to prioritizing my purchases I’ve often found myself asking “Do you NEED this?” vs. “Does this make you happy?”, so while I can sometimes justify a $200 shopping spree (can’t go to work naked right?) it’s a bit harder for me to spend the same amount to see live entertainment.
My outlook on concert spending kinda changed after Michael Jackson died. I realized that I’d missed Britney Spears at her peak and now that MJ had died I’d never be able to see him live either. I couldn’t continue to miss all my favorite music stars. So when Beyonce announced that she’d be going on tour I decided I HAD to get tickets – missing this tour was NOT an option!! Luckily I snagged seats for the last North American show a week after Bey dropped her surprise visual album. Hearing new material made me kinda glad I’d waited so long to see the starlet. Though I’ve been a member of the Beyhive since she was singing on stoops with Wyclef, I feel like she’s never been as great as she is now and I‘m glad I got to experience this version of Beyonce rather than the one too scared to try something new.
What makes Beyonce so good? On this self-titled album, the singer seems to have come into her own as both a person and an artist. Her last four albums, though great, were still pretty “safe” since she followed this formula:
- Release a single embracing current pop trends (i.e. Diplo rhythms or featured artist like Shakira) and carefully craft an album filled with R&B/Pop tracks.
- Be sure the songs, and their accompanying videos, build confidence in women while enticing straight men and providing catchy phrases for the gay community.
- Go platinum and repeat.
On her latest work Beyonce sticks to her fail proof formula, but instead of crooning strictly family friendly lyrics, Beyonce delves into more controversial topics such as erotica and feminism. Does it mean this is the real Bey – the one she’s been hiding from us in these carefully controlled interviews and documentaries? Not necessarily, but at the very least it shows she’s grown comfortable in taking expressive risks and it works! Bey’s newfound knowledge of self is apparent not only when listening to the album but in watching her perform on stage. Of course she’s never had problems commanding an audience as her alter ego “Sasha Fierce” but the confidence she’s gained as ‘Yonce takes her performance to another level.
So that’s why concert tickets were my favorite purchase in 2013. For the price of a Sallie Mae payment I got to see one of my favorite all-time artists belt out her greatest hits while still in her prime. Beyonce gave me an experience I’ll never forget, but just in case I ever need a reminder I snagged this over-priced souvenir tank – told you I could always justify more clothes. 😉
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