In a musical era that seems so overwrought and saturated with empty songs like “This is why I’m hot” and egomaniacs like Kanye West, 50 Cent, and Puff Daddy, its great to know there are still true artists like Justin Timberlake.
Before SexyBack or the Justified album I was already a fan of his work. Friends would always laugh, when they’d sit in my car and surely an Nsync track would be blaring from the speakers. But even throughout the Nsync years, especially their last album, Justin’s talent shines through. On songs such as This I Promise You, Gone and other ballads his seriousness as an artist was evident.
Timberlake has crossed many different genres and stereotypes to bring together the music on his last two albums. To my surprise, during his concert in Toronto last night, JT played the piano, guitar, portable synthesizer and seems to have to the ability to play the drums as well. And in between all of this he manages to keep up with his dancer at full speed. Truly impressive.
Justin has a humbleness that I think will help to keep him striving for great music where other artists get lost in their own fame and pending mediocrity. Before his encore performance Timberlake thanked the crowd for their attendance, and described how in awe even he is with his own life. It appeared to be a genuine moment of appreciation that I think is rare to find.
The one low part of the concert was the much dragged on Timbaland appearance in which he did his best monkey with a tin cup dance to sell his latest record Shock Value. I like Timbaland and think he’s a great producer, but last night was just excessive. Even during my current favourite track “The Way I Are” Timbaland’s half-cocked, half-brained DJ was yammering on throughout the whole song. I’m trying to listen to the words and the beat and all I can hear for 4 min is;
“Everybody say Timbaland” – 10 different times
“Everybody say Heeeeyyy” – 10 different times
“Ho ho ho ho ho ho ho ho ho” – This was truly painful
And if the above were not enough to drown out the lyrics and send me spinning into a rage, sometimes the DJ would just sing along with the lyrics as if the Air Canada Centre was paying him to run a Karaoke night.
But I digress, I’m glad I was able to see one of the greatest performers and artists of my time in Justin Timberlake and I hope he keeps making music for years to come.
If anyone agrees, disagrees or thinks there are other all around performers (write, producer, play, dance, sing etc) out there that deserve an honourable message, please leave a comment.