OnMilwaukee By Dan Garcia
Legendary American singer-songwriter John Mellencamp took the stage at the Riverside last night, delivering his first of two rescheduled performances that left a lasting mark on all of those who attended.
From the captivating moments that resonated with the crowd to the venue's unique ambiance, here are six compelling reasons why missing this extraordinary concert would be a regrettable choice.
1. A unique start to the night
Last night’s concert commenced with a 30-minute collection of film clips, including classics like "Grapes of Wrath," "Fugitive Kind" and "The Misfits." Mellencamp’s voice narrated short stories during the clips, sharing how he was influenced by James Dean and pop culture during his formative years. This unique opening set the stage for an emotionally resonant concert experience, immersing the audience in Mellencamp's inspirations and creating a deeper connection between the artist and his fans. It was a unique and intimate glimpse into the artist's creative process, adding an extra layer of depth to an already unforgettable performance.
2. Intimate acoustic moments
Mellencamp's ability to captivate extends beyond his high-energy rock anthems. During the concert, he treated the audience to intimate acoustic moments, showcasing his versatility as a musician. One standout was his soul-stirring acoustic rendition of the classic hit "Jack & Diane." Stripped down to its essence, this performance offered a glimpse into Mellencamp's profound artistry.
3. The Riverside's enchanting ambiance
The Riverside Theater in Milwaukee, renowned for its historic charm and impeccable acoustics, provided the perfect setting for Mellencamp's concert, which is likely why he chose to return to the venue after the success of his performances in 2019. With its elegant architecture and intimate atmosphere, the venue allowed fans to forge a deeper connection with the music. Each note reverberated through the theater, enveloping the audience in a spellbinding ambiance that enhanced the entire experience. Just because Summerfest has arrived, don’t sleep on how great of an atmosphere the Riverside provides for Milwaukee music fans in the summer.
4. A second night to relive the magic
For those who were unable to attend the initial concert or simply wanted to relive the enchantment, Mellencamp graciously scheduled a second performance at the Riverside Theater for Tuesday night. This opportunity allowed fans to either catch up on what they missed or experience the concert again, ensuring that a minimal amount of his Milwaukee fans had to miss out on this extraordinary event.
5. An unforgettable encore
The concert's climax came during the encore when Mellencamp unleashed two of his most iconic hits – "Cherry Bomb" and "Hurts So Good" – to close out the memorable night. The Riverside Theater reverberated with the sheer energy of the crowd as they sang along to these timeless rock anthems. This unforgettable encore left an indescribable feeling of elation that could only be experienced live, and that fans surely can’t wait to experience again tonight as Mellencamp returns for the final night of his two-night residency.