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REVIEW: ROB THOMAS – MELBOURNE

Review of Rob Thomas Gig Margaret Court Arena Melbourne 21/11/2019 by Jonathan Bowen

One of Melbourne favourite sons, Rob Thomas was back in town, this time on his chipped tooth tour. Rob came on stage in denim jeans and the T-shirt he wore from the cover of his latest album.

He opened his show with the song “I love it”. Ladies were screaming and the men were cheering as he took to the stage bouncing and full of life. Rob’s followed this up with a performance of his hit song “Lonely No More” which had the crowd singing along to the classic anthem.

The moment of the night was when Rob spoke about the regret he has about comments he made towards the Aboriginal community during his last concert in Melbourne in 2016. He spoke about the immaturity of the comments and the personal growth he has since gone through. He wrote a song about the experience which he performed solo called “Early in the Morning”. Rob showed genuine remorse about the comments he made and the crowd forgave him.

The next song was a tribute to David Bowie with a performance of his hit song “Let’s Dance”. The crowd were back on the feet swaying and moving in time the to the great bass licks being performed by Al Carty. This song is close to many Australian’s hearts with the music video famously filmed in Broken Hill and Sydney.

Rob went on to tell the story of the day he was in Arizona on tour with Matchbox Twenty and got a call from Disney asking if he would be interested in writing a song for a new movie they were doing. He went onto to explain that the song came about when he was on stage being a Rock God with Matchbox Twenty and five minutes later, he was standing in the rain outside with his dog while it did its business. Rob said the experience reminded him of the smaller things that makes people and animals happy. Whether you are a rock god playing in an arena or the smile on a dog’s face after it done it business. This experience inspired him to write the song “Little Wonders” for the movie Meet the Robinsons.

The performances of songs such as “3am” and “That’s Alright Mamma” showed a diversity to the type of music production Rob seems to be heading towards. These songs had a very distinctive country sound to them which I get the feeling he may explore further in the future.

The show closed out with performances of the songs “Unwell”, “Smooth” and “This is how your heart breaks”. The performance of Smooth was as good as if Carlos was playing it with Rob himself. It is hard to imagine that song was released twenty years ago. It still sounds like if it was released tomorrow it would hit the top of the charts. He left the audience wanting more which is what everyone wants to see when going to a gig.

Rob continues to show what a consummate professional he is and is still able to put on memorable shows for people of all ages. If you happen to be in Perth on the 23rd of November, make sure you try and get to his final gig on his Australian Tour. It will certainly be one not to be missed.