Yoko Ono & The Plastic Ono Band – One Night Only in NYC, 9/15/13

Yoko OnoIn promotion for her new record Take Me To The Land Of Hell, and in her only concert of the year, Yoko Ono and the newly reformed Plastic Ono Band lit up the stage to a sold out audience at The Bowery Ballroom. Prior to show time, some of Ono’s earliest filmed works were projected and recordings of her and John Lennon reading poems from her 1964 book of poetry, Grapefruit, were played, highlighting her century long career from the mid 1960’s to now.

At 80 years young, Yoko Ono still sounds as she did back in the 1970’s. If anything, her vocals are stronger and more grounded than ever before. Clad in black sunglasses (of course), a fedora, a leather jacket, and a heartwarming smile, Ono is constantly current on all fronts, fashion included.

The “new” Plastic Ono Band was seven members strong, featuring her son, Sean Lennon, Nils Cline (Wilco), and Yuka Honda (Cibo Matto). Ono sang songs off of her new record, ranging from nostalgic, piano driven ballads to electro funk and everything in between; with plenty of Ono’s signature ways of singing and modulating her voice.

The super group performed some of Ono’s biggest hits, including “Walking On Thin Ice” and “Waiting For The D Train” as well as rarities going all the way back to The Rolling Stones Rock & Roll Circus with “Don’t Worry Kyoko.” Renowned David Bowie/ John Lennon guitarist, Earl Slick, sat in on the two encores of the show, making the night that much more special.

“Onochords” (tiny flashlights) were handed out for the last song of the night. Ono told audience members to flash their Onochords and create a “sea of light and love”; everyone willingly complied, and created a wonderful array of sound and vision. If there’s one thing to be taken away from the concert, it’s peace, love and understanding.

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