GUEST BLOG: This band just keeps getting better – by Jen

Jen went along to the Las Vegas #LastSummerOnEarth2016 show and wrote this piece about what a fun time she had at the show!


September 22 marked two months since my friends and I had the joy of seeing the band Barenaked Ladies in Las Vegas.

This band has been MY band since the mid-1990’s when I first heard Maybe You Should Drive in college in Santa Barbara. A boy introduced me to the band and listening to this album really changed my view of music. I was hooked.

I found Born on a Pirate Ship in an old record store in Seattle on vacation and the more I listened to them play, the more I heard their witty lyrics and harmonies, the more I was hooked.

I used to be a card-carrying member of the “Ladies Room” which gives you an idea of how much I LOVE this band. They have gotten me thru break ups and makeups and recovery from significant injuries. This year’s show was my 15th live show and this band just keeps getting better. There are those who will argue how much they miss Steve, but I think they keep getting better as a four man band. Grinning Streak and Silverball are right now my two favorite albums. Alas, I digress.

Barenaked Ladies played at the reasonably new Downtown Las Vegas Event Center which is evolving to become one of the best places to see live music. It’s an outside venue, which is great… except for the middle of July. It ended up being hotter than 110 degrees the night they played and it was crazy humid due to our monsoon weather.

I was fortunate enough to be able to land VIP tickets for myself and my dear friend Stacy who is as big a BNL fan as I am. To say that we may both be obsessed with the band is shy of an understatement. We were able to get tix in the 4th row on the aisle and it was almost painful to wait from February to July when the show was scheduled.

Howard Jones and OMD opened for BNL and they were so classy and really a blast back to my teenage years. Howard Jones had some technical difficulties and ended up playing “No One is to Blame” solo. I thought he wasn’t going to play with my favorite Ladies, but he did, which was awesome because it’s such a great song. The lead singer for OMD had so much energy and came on stage in shorts due to the heat. He danced around so much on stage that I was starting to worry he may have a heat stroke. OMD was awesome. We learned that the engaged couple in front of us was only at the show to see OMD. They came all the way from Minneapolis and no matter how much we tried to talk them in to staying for Barenaked Ladies, they left but gave us their seats. 3rd row! Woo Hoo!

When Barenaked Ladies came on stage to play their acoustic beginning to the show, it was perfection.


They opened with “Testing 1, 2, 3” which was a great way to begin a wonderful night. Ed’s daughter joined the band for “Smile” and she was as talented as her father.

After their acoustic set, the band went behind the curtain and Ed started out on Brian Wilson. Their set list was amazing and didn’t disappoint. Maybe a third of the way through the set, a family who had seats in the front row said goodbye and left presumably due to the heat and my friend and I ended up in the front row. To be in the front row of a Barenaked Ladies concert was one of the best experiences of my life. A little girl threw a monkey on stage during “Million Dollars” and Jim thanked her. Ed and Jim tried batting the monkey off their guitars and it got stuck on Ed’s strings. Having Ed sing to a guy in the audience “You Are So Beautiful” is the epitome of what a live Barenaked Ladies show is all about.


Ed joked about staying at the venue because the booking the following night was to be “The Art of Rap” and he broke out in his own medley of rap songs. Tyler closing out the show is always a treat. Hearing the banter between the band is what makes this band such an amazing live show and I truly hope they come back to our lovely city soon.

As we scored VIP tickets, we were fortunate enough to meet the band after the show. They are all truly genuine, nice artists who are gracious with their fans. I regret not being able to get to Great Britain or Toronto for their latest shows, but look forward to seeing them play live again very soon!


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