>

I’m ashamed. For months not I’ve had my Christina Aguilera tickets stuck to the side of my fridge. Placed there behind my McDonald’s coupons and pictures of my nephew. I really only started mentioning my intention of going to the concert several weeks ago because I was so ashamed of going. When I eventually started telling people the reaction I got was pretty much what I expected. “Why would you waste your money” or “That’s the lamest thing I’ve ever heard.” Ignoring the fact that I hadn’t heard the word “lame” in several years I went to the Christina Aguilera concert tonight and found out I had nothing to be ashamed about at all.

Half way during the concert it hit me. Why was I embarrassed to see such a talented artist. I mean isn’t this what performing and entertaining was all about? You can say whatever you want about artists like Christina or even Mrs. Aguilera herself but even the biggest Pantera or Dave Mathews fan cannot deny that this girl knows how to put on a show. And isn’t that why we go to concerts. So we can see something that we can’t watch in our living rooms or night a 24/7 kareoke night’s at Ducky’s Pub.

And do you know what? Same goes for the Pussycat Dolls. I mean sure they didn’t start off singing in the dingy college bars or sleeping in the back of their car writing poetry. But they are still performers. They are good at what they do and they just happen to be better at it the less clothes they wear? Are they to blame for that? Each one of those “dolls” at some point made the decision to pack up their lives and move to L.A or NYC or maybe even Las Vegas. They decided that a life behind a desk or ringing through oranges wasn’t enough for them and now look at where they are. At the end of the day you have to respect the courage it must have taken to get to where they are.

I know that you are reading this and still scoffing. But most of us take the elevator to go up two floors or wouldn’t sing in front of our dearest friends to save our own lives. But each and everynight these performers bust their asses off and sing in front of thousands of fans that could turn on them in a second, but because they sing Pop music they are easily dismissed. I think even legends like John Lennon would respect performers like Christina Aguilera and you should to.

For me the concert was so impressive. Here was this girl that was rushed into a record deal to keep pace with then superstar Britney Spears. We laughed at “Genie in a Bottle” because she was a Britney copy cat. Then when her second CD came out we all pretended to hate “Dirrty” even though we all had it on our mix Cds or rushed to the dance floor when the clubs played it. And with her third CD just released, it is evident that she is around for the long term. (Can you believe that she has had only three Cds!)

At the end of the day Christina Aguilera has always just been about the singing, and has a singer she has never tried to hide what she is. (in case you didn’t know she loves Sex and everything that has to do with it!) That was never more evident tonight when she performed in front of a sold out crowd. Between the countless costume changes, the near pornographic videos and the brief lecture on domestic violence it is hard to imagine that she didn’t have a say in every single aspect of that show.
There are also many pros about going to a concert designed mostly for girls. Besides the numerous dance moves involving stripper poles and barely there costumes that are somehow supposed to instill women with the magic of confidence, there is the bathroom lines. Seriously, I went pee three times in the time it took my friends of the female persuasion to go to the washroom once. Why three times you might ask? Because I could. And after going to numerous Flames games and waiting what seems like hours, I think a small line would break even the harshest of Christina’s critics.

So am I still ashamed of having gone to the Christina concert? No, I’m not. Not even the littlest bit. I paid the same about I would to see Hockey players struggle to make the playoffs or see a musical with Broadway rejects. And the hockey players certainly don’t dance around strippers poles, not that I would want them to.

So at the end of the day, who should be more ashamed? Me? For having a great time at the concert? Or is it those who would rather scoff at an amazing talent as they ring me through at Safeway or sit in a dark dingy bar drinking their lonely draughts. Yeah, that’s what I thought.


Mike Morrison