Posters flashed all over the city, banners announced his arrival, all routes of reaching to the public via media were flooded with one day…11th Feb…when Bryan Adams was set to perform live in Pune. An unusual and iconic concert to flaunt. Pune boasted of hosting ‘ The Legend’ and also had the rare opportunity to kick off his series of Asian concerts with this one in the city.
After initial apprehension for the pricing of the tickets, to landing amidst the flurry of people on the entrance gate, it was all in the mind. A lifetime opportunity to listen and see perform one of the biggest international talents….Bryan Adams.
First two hours were marred by sheer disappointment as we were thrown open to plethora of activities unfolding on the stage. Watching the technicians at work, some stupid introductory compering by radio jockeys to some disappointing ramp walk by models, the show started with a boo from all. The band to open for the legend was a total anticlimax, with the music taking the piece of the cake rather than the vocals and the song lyrics. Nonetheless, what followed after this mess made sure that we forgot all this nuance. I was cursing for we left our office early to make sure we get a good spot to view. And what was happening in front of us was utter rubbish. Me and my friends prayed that Bryan show should make up for this.
7.45pm, it was announced that ‘Here is Bryan Adams’ and all the lights went off, everyones eyes were set on the stage and the screen to see their hero come on stage. He took half an hour to come on stage and did he rock….well, mightily, in deed
He simply came on stage and started with the music with the apt opening of a concert, ‘I need somebody, somebody like you’ as a gesture to appreciate the presence of thousands of people in front of him. The crowd went made and shouted to the core to listen his first song. The fact that here is the moment to see the legendary guitarist perform in front of you is one of its kind. This one followed by Somebody, one night love affair. ‘Here I am’ marked the enthusiasm of the crowd trigger to the hilt, whilst the stage displayed its true colours in reds, blues, greens, yellows, all flashing. After this one, he introduced himself to the crowd saying, my name is Bryan, well…does he need an introduction?
‘Can’t stop this think we started' was an fitting song in the middle of the concert supported amiably with the eclectic guitar , amazing vocals and lights all around. The stage was throwing pictures of all the band members performing, and it was treat to watch. Adams, got louder rightly responded by the crowd.
‘Lets make a night to remember’ followed, a song which for me, is a benchmark for romance. It sent chills into me, as I have been listening to this song for hundreds of times, and to see it live sent waves across me. It was sheer delight to see the aging rockstar perform with utmost zeal and valor. I was thoroughly enjoying the way he expressed himself whilst singing this one. Sure this man is one romantic. This song was well responded by the audience as he muted himself for a while to let the audience since parts of it. Loved it!
The youthful '18 till I die’ made the crowd shout to the top of the voices, whilst I was struggling to listen to the original voice. Then came the song, which everyone waited for. ‘Summer of 69’, I expected he will keep this one for lasts, but was a surprise to hear so soon. This song catapulted the fervor of the audience as it was their voice more than his that ran all round. Bryan adams knowing the popularity of this one, rightly muted himself to let the audience sing for him.
In the midst of his performace, Adams at one point motioned towards a lit room on one of the towers in the background, and yelled, “Dear sir, hello do come down and join us. I have a spare ticket here.”
The lead guitarist, Keith Scott performed amazingly with the guitar with some unusual sounds with the strings and some small gigs like rotating the guitar around his neck, on which Bryan adams asked him, ‘how do you do it, tell me’. Keith replied ‘ I don’t know’.
‘The only thing I want’ , ‘All for you’ created that mass shouting amongst the crowd, while songs like ‘Everything I do’ garnered the interest of all those romantics present. It was a speechless moment for me, for the song which I have been humming and listening and rerunning for thousands of times was being performed live in front of me. It was a moment to cherish forever. The song 'Please Forgive me' put forth his nostalgic face in front and he said ‘ Please forgive me’ to the crowd after the song. 'Cuts like a knife', charged the spirits with crowd humming the songs one after another.
Then came the moment of enjoyment when Bryan asked the crowd if anyone knew the lyrics of his song ‘ Baby’, one girl was chosen amongst the pool of hands raised. The lucky girl got a chance to sing along the star in front of the mammoth crowd.
5 minutes to 10 and Bryan Adams took his bow with his band and left the stage. Disappointed that the show got over so soon, we started moving towards the exit and to our dismay (or cheer), he came back on to the stage to perform for some more time. He said, lets sing some more songs. And we were sad that we lost our prized spot to see him, but nonetheless enjoyed the next 3-4 songs he sang.
The show got over and the numbness in our legs was sensed as we walked towards our vehicles. The pain of standing for more than 5 hours was lost in the anticipation of a brilliant show. And certainly, the rockstar made sure that ‘It was a night to remember’.