Jessie J thrills fans at Metro Radio Arena show

Jessie J brought one of the biggest shows of the year to Metro Radio Arena on Saturday. Lesley Oldfield and her daughter were there

Jessie J live on stage at the Metro Radio Arena
Jessie J live on stage at the Metro Radio Arena

Despite her London vowels, Jessie J has a US-style showmanship and bouncy energy which is perfect for an arena setting and which brought roars of appreciation from her Newcastle audience on Saturday night.

As my excited 13-year-old daughter and I watched Jessie bring on the bling, the pop diva hit every soaring note and riffed unfalteringly.

Appearing silhouetted in a doorway she opened with new single Thunder, striding into a sea of dry ice in a salmon pink, silver-sequinned 50s-swimsuit affair with billowing chiffon train.

It was my favourite in a succession of dramatic outfits. Indeed, the first 15 minutes alone included a costume change amid four songs, and, with Domino, some audience participation.

We had been warmed up by half a dozen songs from rockers Lawson, who were clearly popular beforethey got to She Was Mine and Juliet.

 

Their necessarily straightforward approach contrasted with Jessie’s overwrought video entreaties, themed up in line with this year’s Alive album.

We learned that Awake, Love, Instinct, Value and Energy are the components of Alive and each had a homily, as Jessie’s recorded voice declared eternal truths and entreated us to “Love what you have”, “Live life to the full”, “Create your own perfection” and more.

This nauseating evangelism seemed unnecessary as well as irritating. I much preferred it when she stopped gushing and jumped around to her more down-to-earth entreaty Do It Like a Dude!

Jessie had a great rapport with the crowd, who melted as she dedicated Laserlight to the memory of a six-year-old fan Daniel. He got his wish to join her on stage for the song a year ago, despite his illness, and his family was in the audience.

She also told another young fan, with a smile, that it was way past their bedtime and how weird it was to see her own face on a T-shirt, especially all scrunched up. Cue Jessie scrunching up her face.

All ages had come along to see Jessie’s one-and-a-half-hour set, which was interspersed with short clips of the young Jessica Cornish, showing early star potential.

She knew they wanted to hear her all her hits and obliged beautifully, sashaying along a bow-shaped walkway which brought her into the crowd and laying on fireworks, glitter and lasers with abandon.

She also explained that she didn’t see the point of encores, so would just carry on, if that was OK. Jessie J is clearly having a ball and wants everyone to have a fabulous time too. And we did.

Then the audience left - laden with carrier bags of posters and paraphernalia - singing along to the words of her finale, and biggest hit, Price Tag.

Journalists

David Whetstone
Culture Editor
Graeme Whitfield
Business Editor
Mark Douglas
Newcastle United Editor
Stuart Rayner
Sports Writer