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Surprise Guests And Weird Encounters At Shows In 2016




Don’t you like it when you go to a show and someone totally unexpected shows up? Sometimes an artist is announced as a surprise guest, and the mystery lasts till the name is revealed at the last minute, sometimes it’s a complete surprise till the end, and sometimes you even bump into a celebrity in the crowd, which certainly adds some spice to the night. It happened to me several times this year.

The weekly and excellent ‘It’s a School Night’ at Bardot has sometimes mysterious guests, and in January, Miguel got to be the secret headliner… However, the news was revealed a few hours before the show and the place got very, very crowded. In particular, the girls went crazy, hyper excited as soon as they saw Miguel, but I managed to stay in the front. Miguel covered Bowie’s ‘Space Oddity’ (Bowie had just died), everyone sang along, Chance the Rapper even showed up with actress Chloe Grace Moretz and sat just in front of the stage. Miguel was adorable and charming, and he serenaded the whole audience. This was a special night and I felt lucky and privileged to have been in the middle of this packed jam club on a Monday night.

In January, I also got to see Mereki at the Resident, a pretty bleach-blonde looking a bit like Sky Ferreira and Debbie Harry, who immediately took control of the room with an energizing blend of hooky pop, industrial noise, and punk rock. But the surprise was one of her musicians, who was no other than Dhani Harrison, yes, George’s son. He had left his band TheNewNo2 for the night, and was providing guitar and beyond, using a large number of pedals making all sorts of noise effects. Dhani did hang out in the room before the show, talking with friends and looking like the most regular guy ever.

This next encounters didn’t happen during a show but during an art exhibit by Lindsey Way and Jessicka Addams at La Luz de Jesus… Lindsey is Gerard Way’s wife, and the ex-frontman of My Chemical Romance showed up for a little while, posing with delighted fans. But the evening brought even more surprises as Director Kevin Smith came and even bought some art, and at the end of the night, Lindsey Way’s good friend Frances Bean Cobain walked just in front of me, before disappearing backstage, but I could snapped a few pictures of her, without even asking her permission.

In May, Bob Mould played at the Teragram Ballroom, and since the second part of the show was all Hüsker Dü, Ryan Adams showed up (he is a big fan) and the songs became louder and the stage wilder. At the end of the show, they disappeared backstage and reappeared with Fred Armisen, who drummed through a Ramones’ classic ‘Beat on the Brat’… Two surprise guests for the same price, what a very high-energy sweet surprise it was.

John Mayer showed up at Bob Weir’s concert at the Wiltern, and it shouldn’t have been a complete surprise because it was not the first time Mayer was stepping in, but there was more in store as The National’s Matt Berninger joined them on vocals for a few songs.

But probably the most surprising encounter occurred at Father John Misty’s concert at the El Rey, back in August. At the first song, ‘Hollywood Forever Cemetery Sings’, a very excited blonde woman suddenly came in front of me, and obstructed my view…. I taped her in the back and asked her to move. She immediately moved but was followed everywhere by a guy who gave me a weird look which seemed to say ‘what are you doing?’ The blonde danced in front of the stage, then left while complaining about her weird shoes. Looking at people’s behavior, I understood she was some kind of celebrity, but I hadn’t recognized Lady Gaga yet!! I found this short video posted on Twitter/Snapchat, Gaga and Misty met backstage and she looked like Father John Misty’s biggest fan,… I would say she was the perfect groupie.


Chance the Rapper at Miguel’s show


Dhani Harrison


Gerard Way


Frances Bean Cobain


Ryan Adams


Bob Weir and John Mayer

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