February 4, 2004  
Volume 97, Issue 69  

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Jann Arden entertains at the JLC

LIVE: Jann Arden
John Labatt Centre
Saturday, Jan. 31

Gazette File Photo
JANN AND EMM UNITE . The poetic Emm Gryner warmed up the crowd for Jann Arden at the JLC last Saturday.

Forest, Ontario native Emm Gryner can sing all “Summerlong” and all winter long if you ask us.

Emm opened for chanteuse extraordinaire Jann Arden this past Saturday at the JLC. Emm’s rich musicality, poetic sound and unique style definitely set the stage for an ultra-enjoyable concert experience. “Breaking News,” the most recent addition to the singer-songwriter’s repertoire, highlighted her beautiful voice and showcased her nimble piano fingers and gift for songwriting.

The audience rose from their seats as Arden graced the stage after Gryner’s wonderful performance. London is just one of many Canadian cities Arden will visit on her Love is the Only Soldier tour.

Although Jann is touring to promote her newest album of the same name, she sang many songs from her older albums, including “Never Mind,” “I Would Die for You,” “Could I Be Your Girl,” “Insensitive” and the audience favourite, “Waiting in Canada.” From her latest album, Jann performed “Love is The Only Soldier,” “If You Love me” and “Four Feet Deep” — a beautiful song co-written and performed as a duet with Emm Gryner.

Arden’s energy and vivacity filled the arena with each song she performed and her phenomenal sense of humour was evident throughout the evening. After Jann introduced each band member individually, she sang them a song followed by comical anecdotes — including some experiences on the tour bus, such as playing x’s and o’s in her guitarist’s back hair in order to save paper, and watching her drummer constantly play ping-pong.

Not only did the audience enjoy Jann, but Jann enjoyed the audience and her band members when she added a little game into the performance. In “Stump the Band,” as Arden termed it, each member of her band chose a random song from other artists to play. Stumping both the band and the audience, Jann sang AC/DC’s “Highway to Hell” and “Heart of Glass,” by Blondie.

The concert ended with an unreleased song Jann wrote, which she describes as “quite lovely, but probably won’t see the light of day.” Despite her scepticism, she decided to share the song, and it was breathtaking. Arden returned to the stage for an encore and played three additional songs — one of which was “Top of the World,” by Karen Carpenter, her childhood idol and inspiration.

Both Gryner and Arden captivated the audience throughout the concert, providing a truly entertaining experience.

—Kevin Brooks
and Deanna DiMenna



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