Live Review: Melissa Etheridge & Sheryl Crow

9 April 2018 | 10:16 am | Madelyn Tait

"Security guards made a couple of audience members sit down during hit 'Come To My Window' but Etheridge encouraged them to get up anyway, resulting in masses running to the front of the stage."

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Sheryl Crow was first to take the stage, walking on with her acoustic guitar and six bandmates and immediately launching into Everyday Is A Winding Road. "Oh my gosh, we love Sydney, we're never going home," she announced after the song had crescendoed to its climactic finish.

The crowd took some warming up, remaining calm and seated as she played possibly her most well-known hit, All I Wanna Do, only three songs in. Crow was a confident, seasoned performer, so comfortable and at ease behind the mic she was able to get the tame crowd to start singing along a little when prompted. She impressed by playing (and playing well!) several instruments throughout the set including guitars, keys, bass and even delivering a harmonica solo during Best Of Times.

Fans were treated to every one of her biggest hits; Soak Up The Sun, her version of The First Cut Is The Deepest and If It Makes You Happy, which saw some punters begin to really get into it. A stripped-back Strong Enough was an absolute highlight, and the charismatic performer elicited laughs by changing the word 'man' to 'mate' with a strong Aussie accent.

Crow discussed making her last record during the US election, jokingly predicting a lot of Americans would be moving to Australia, and delivered a powerful performance of Halfway There, about all the fighting in America.

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She recalled meeting Melissa Etheridge here while touring with Michael Jackson before bringing the Kansas singer-songwriter out to perform The Allman Brothers Band's Midnight Rider, which saw the crowd go wild. Crow sat at the piano and finished her set with a beautiful rendition of the slow-burning I Shall Believe off of her debut 1993 record, earning her a standing ovation.

After a flawless hour and a half performance of palatable country from Crow, the crowd had already got their money's worth - but the show was only halfway through. As the lights dimmed and Melissa Etheridge came on stage and began playing drums, an electric energy took over the room. The crowd became animated, rising to their feet as Etheridge was handed her Gibson during opener Your Little Secret.

Although the only guitarist on stage, Etheridge created a huge wall of sound with her 12-string guitar. Each song was lengthy and featured long instrumental sections and killer guitar solos - she joked that she could play a three-hour set with only five songs.

Her voice was smooth but powerful and delivered nostalgic songs from the '80s and '90s including Nowhere To Go and You Can Sleep While I Drive. She too joked about her country currently having a "nervous breakdown", commenting on how happy everyone in Australia is by comparison.

Security guards made a couple of audience members sit down during hit Come To My Window but Etheridge encouraged them to get up anyway, resulting in masses running to the front of the stage. The biggest moment of her set came with a passionate performance of I'm The Only One featuring a crazy harmonica solo and a hyped up crowd.

Etheridge thanked her band and even the security guards before playing Bring Me Some Water, wowing the audience with her tapping-style guitar work. "I'd walk off and have you all clap again but I've gotta be out in ten minutes," she stated, diving right into would-be-encore Like The Way I Do - an energetic finish to a great show.