Howard Jones Tells Stories, Sings Hits At Packed Music Box
Howard Jones, the MTV and pop music icon from the ‘80s, brought his one man show to the nearly sold-out Music Box Supper Club on Thursday night. Jones is currently on tour with just a keyboard, a lot of hit songs and a career full of stories that he deftly told throughout the evening.
After opening the show with the Top 20 hit “You Know I Love You, Don’t You?,” Jones told the origins of the song. This was something that he would do either before or after almost every song that he played. It truly was a story teller's kind of evening.
One of the several stories he told was about playing the massive Live Aid concert. He prefaced that by saying that he didn’t play on Band Aid’s “Do They Know It’s Christmas?,” which featured most of Britain’s top pop stars of the day. However, he did want to be a part of the Live Aid concert in 1985 but he said that you had to sell one million records to be on that bill. So he thanked the US audience for helping him reach that milestone. He honored that concert by playing “Hide And Seek,” just as he did on that day at Wembley Stadium.
Being on that bill also had its perks. He mentioned that he flew into the venue via helicopter with Queen, ran into David Bowie at the backstage bar (and Bowie knew who he was!), chatted with Linda McCartney who ended up inviting Jones over to their home, which he turned down because he didn’t think he was worthy.
This show wasn’t all nostalgia; Howard also mentioned that he has worked on many movie soundtracks and has a song on the upcoming animated movie soundtrack called Animal Crackers. He played “We’re In This Together” from that film.
In the middle of the set, Jones did something unique. He said that he wanted to play a song which had a big influence on him but he wanted the audience to decide which song he would play. The choices were “God Only Knows” by the Beach Boys, “Blackbird” by the Beatles and “Careless Whisper” by George Michael.
“Careless Whisper” was the overwhelming winner.
Jones saved the biggest hits for the last part of the show. “Everlasting Love," “Life In One Day” and “What Is Love” closed out the first set.
Stories continued as he mentioned playing for Princess Diana, meeting George Harrison and going on tour with Ringo Starr.
He has had a charmed life for sure.
He closed the show with one of my favorite pop songs from the ‘80s, “No One Is To Blame” and the uplifting “Things Can Only Get Better.”
I love a good story teller's performance and this one ranks up there with the best that I’ve seen.