Concert review by Scarlett A. Lee
In the early 80’s, I can distinctly remember wearing out the needle of my record player on my 45 of Berlin’s No More Words. Those years were formative for me in a musical sense, and Berlin helped to shape my taste in music.
Terri Nunn first joined Berlin in 1978, but took a short break to pursue an acting career not long after. Fortunately, she returned to the Los Angeles-based band in 1980. Otherwise, we may not have some of the most memorable songs of the New Wave genre; and the 80’s as a whole. The band enjoyed widespread success with many hit songs, but disbanded in 1987. Nunn gained the rights to use the name Berlin through legal proceedings, and reformed the band with all new members in 1998.
Nunn has long been regarded as one of the hottest women in rock music. As I stood backstage at the Fox Performing Arts Center watching her prepare for her performance, I could attest to the title. She looked amazing in flowing black, with heels that an average woman would break her ankle in. Time has definitely been kind to her.
The band took to the stage and the opening to Masquerade started the show off with a bang- the crowd cheering loudly as Terri joined them. They continued the momentum with No More Words and the audience responded by enthusiastically singing and dancing. The energy was infectious as they belted out Matter Of Time and the Uber-hit The Metro.
Nunn was fully engaged with the crowd, interacting and speaking fondly about the glory days and getting initial airplay at L.A.’s, World Famous KROQ. She took the opportunity to intro songs a few times throughout the course of the evening, which I think gave the performance a much more intimate feel.
Animal, a new original song expected on their upcoming release was next followed by Pictures Of You. Nunn then shared a very deeply personal, heart wrenching tribute to her mother, (who died five years ago) with the song Mom. One of the highlights of the evening, for me at least, came as Terri was standing amongst the crowd and talked about one of her inspirations, Grace Slick of Jefferson Airplane. The band then launched into a rocking cover of Somebody To Love.
Nunn and her band, consisting of Carlton Bost on guitar, Chris Olivas on drums, and Dave Schulz on keyboards, are obviously connected and very in tune with one another. The performance itself was technically on point and the members of the band seem to feed off of one another’s energy.
At this point in the evening, Terri invited those in the audience that had been given special wristbands earlier to join her on stage for the classic Will I Ever Understand. The stage was jam packed with MILFS and cougars galore, all dancing their asses off.
The show wound down with Sex (I’m A..), which at the time of it’s original release was considered quite controversial. They returned for a three song encore which included Blame It On The World, the mega hit Take My Breath Away, which was featured in the movie Top Gun, and finished strongly with Dancing In Berlin.
Terri Nunn and the current incarnation of Berlin provided a nostalgic trip down memory lane and left us looking forward to what the future holds. Berlin will be playing a handful of dates in January and February in California.
For more info head over to www.berlinpage.com, or check out their social media pages at Facebook and Twitter.
Check out TNN’s photos from the show here!