Alicia Keys at the O2 Arena
Certain concerts remain with us forever. It could be the general vibe of the audience, the performance of the artist and band, the venue or the production – here it’s all of the above, and more. Multiple Grammy-winner Alicia Keys finally makes it to London to perform a one-night-only gig at the O2 Arena, delayed since 2021 due to the pandemic. The songstress is greeted by the eager and excited 20,000 audience members with an indescribable amount of affection. The crowd is mixed: raw and real talent does not discriminate.
Regaled with a blend of the old with the new, firm fans are not disappointed and those only aware of the modern classics of the canon are more than pleased. You Don’t Know My Name, Diary, If I Ain’t Got You, Girl on Fire and No One are all featured alongside songs from more recent offering Keys, the artist’s eighth album.
In a world of auto-tune and homogenous sounds, Keys exudes both originality and a faithful nod to the greats. Prince was a big fan (his video montage of her when he performed at the same venue back in 2007 an obvious accolade). She takes influence from him, draws on Stevie Wonder and even has hints of Michael Jackson; outside of RnB, her taste and performances echo rockier sounds. But this woman is all her own. True artists are very rare these days, but Alicia Keys will go down in history, remembered just as her predecessors are. She’s a legend we are fortunate to still have with us – and her band are pretty impressive too!
It’s remarkable that Keys was once criticised for sitting behind a piano and not offering a “true” performance. The case here is anything but. Commanding the stage, performing a dance routine and even a DJ set before walking through the audience and back to the main stage, the artist offers an entirely entertaining experience, thrilling the crowd and earning multiple rounds of applause. The singer is evidently pleased and humbled by the response, acknowledging London as being energetic and positive. This is a concert for all and a reminder that true music and artistry still, thankfully, exists. Fallin brings one of her final notes, and we are all clearly still falling for her after all these years.
Photos: Christie Goodwin
For further information and future events visit Alicia Keys’s website here.
Watch the video for the single City of Gods (Part II) here: