Music of All Kinds Lifts the Spirits

As we start 2024, we’ve been looking back at the music we’ll remember most from 2023. Of course, one highlight was Taylor Swift’s “Eras” concert at Gillette Stadium in Boston which we attended in May; but we had a wide range of other experiences too.

In April we visited Kimberly’s mom in Las Vegas and got to see singer Wayne Newton. Now over 80, he was well-known when Kimberly was a kid for hits like Danke Schoen, and was friends with famous people including Frank Sinatra and Elvis. When we saw him, he performed in a small theater that seated about 100 people, sharing personal anecdotes and jokes as well as songs.

We saw another senior singer from a different musical genre in August. Country legend Willie Nelson turned 90 last year and celebrated by going On the Road Again with a band that included longtime collaborators and family. We saw him as part of the Outlaw Music Festival in New Hampshire where he performed most of his signature hits to an inter-generational crowd of fans.

A month later we were in New Hampshire again, at the Hampton Ballroom, for something completely different: a concert by Black Veil Brides, a rock band known for hits including  In The End. Here too, the crowd was inter-generational, friendly and enthusiastic, and the dancing was exhilarating.

Last summer we had also planned to see Madonna on her “Celebration” tour, but it was postponed when she got sick. We wound up going to the rescheduled concert just a few weeks ago and saw the Material Girl still going strong at 65. Overall, 2023 was a great musical year for us and we will continue to follow the work of these artists (especially Taylor!)

As we head into the new year, we are also focusing on exploring more musical genres such as R&B, Funk and Hip Hop. We will see Beyonce’s “Renaissance” film when it is available to stream, and we’re looking forward to seeing funk cover band Scary Pockets in Boston this April. We’re also checking the calendar of the Boston Symphony Orchestra to look for classical concerts we might enjoy. We’ve learned that music of all kinds can stretch our minds and lift our spirits. We’re looking forward to what 2024 has in store!

kimberly and sofia jackson
Kimberly Jackson is a longtime contributor to KOM’s Poetry Corner. Sofia Jackson, her daughter, is a longtime Taylor Swift fan and a rising junior in high school. Together they attended the 13th concert of Swift’s 2023 Eras Tour. They can be reached through Kimberly’s website.

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