When we found out that the #1 niece, Rebecca Jade, was going to be a backup singer for Sheila E., the percussionist a protege of the late artist known as Prince, we were pretty excited. But when we found they were going to be performing in New York City, well, that became a priority.
Rebecca Jade, Sheila E., Lynn Mabry
First, get tickets online at the BB King Blues Club. Next, find a place to stay downtown that cost only an arm and half a leg; the Distrikt fit the bill. I took the bus down early for a work meeting, and the wife and daughter followed about three hours later.
We met at the hotel at 4 pm. I actually took a nap, largely because of some tooth pain (another story). We get to the club less than two blocks away, and found ourselves in line. It’s a dinner theater, as it were, and since I bought only the “cheap seats,” ($49.50 each, plus handling), by the time we got in, there was but one table left that was close by, stage left, already with a single patron.
We had a $10 minimum to eat/drink; easy enough. The Daughter had a cheeseburger and fries that was only $13. I had mac and cheese for $20, with a slab of salmon for an additional $7; not bad, especially the latter. The wife’s meal of shrimp and grits was not only overpriced at $36, but skimpy. I gave her a chunk of both the mac/cheese and fish, and the Daughter was generous with her fries. Her Mississippi mud cake ($12) was like it came from a box of frozen dessert.
Then the show begins, sort of, with two videos. Watch America and Funky National Anthem: Message 2 America, the latter of which shows the Niece at 0:58 and beyond.
The band comes out:
Lynn Mabry – vocals
Rebecca Jade – vocals
Eddie M. – saxophone
Mychael Gabriel – guitar
John Wesley McVicker – drums
Raymond McKinley – bass
Bertron Curtis – keyboards
Ooo, the singers are on stage left, which was close to us. We were watching Sheila, of course, but also my first sister’s only child.
Love Bizarre (with a Prince/P-Funk/Sly Stone medley). The niece is in the striped skirt.
Purple Rain. A guy in a blue T-shirt was way too loud nearby with his running commentary.
17 Days/Alphabet St./Raspberry Beret, the latter with an RJ solo!
Girl Meets Boy. Sheila slows it way down to sing a song she co-wrote after Prince’s death. She says it’s available for free on SheilaE.com. She urged everyone to find a stranger and tell him or her that you love them. The Wife and I took that opportunity to catch RJ’s eye.
America/Baby I’m A Star/Glamorous Life.
A nice show. We see the niece after the show far too briefly, then went back to the hotel and were asleep before Snoop Dogg started his 11:30 show at that venue.
BTW, there were a LOT of people recording her, and she didn’t seem to care. The videos above were taken very near where we were sitting, on our side of the stage.