Cyndi Lauper, Dr. John
Thursday, Oct. 27
The Palladium in Carmel was rocking Thursday night...sort of.
A crowd of about 1,000 made the 1,600-capacity theatre seem full but not packed. But the venue is something to see, no matter who's playing or how many people are in the room.
Decked out in a purple suit and golden shirt, Dr. John opened with classics, including "Right Place Wrong Time." He wore his age well; he even did a little dancing across stage. There were skulls on the piano, and not because of Halloween; he gave the crowd a straight-up shot of New Orleans/Mississippi Delta Voodoo blues.
Cyndi Lauper joined Dr. John on stage for a not-so-rehearsed rendition of "Wang Dang Doodle," but they pulled it off.
The set break took more than 30 minutes, which made the crowd a little anxious.
Things didn't start well for Lauper when she took center stage. She seemed awkward and had some costume and sound glitches. After a song or two, she acted confused, so people shouted out requests. She replied, "Uh, let's see...I don't take requests...zip it...shove it...if you want to hear that go take a walk and come back."
And she kept talking. She told stories about Halloween, dressing up dogs and dancing. She got the crowd back a bit with "She Bop," during which she climbed off stage and entered the audience. That was fun, but it got old when she did it a third and fourth time.
The rest of Lauper's set included blues covers and songs that made her famous. Drummer Steve Potts owned his kit, playing like he was alone on stage and taking the spotlight a few times.
Lauper probably would have been run out of Indy by an angry mob if she hadn't ended with her trio of classics, "Girls Just Want to Have Fun," "Time After Time" and "True Colors." Despite the glitches, the awkwardness of an aging star and all the filler commentary, this music made people move. It made them feel happy and maybe a little younger than they looked, and really, that's good enough.