The Warfield Theater stood tall with a large illuminated white sign and alphabet letters spelling out Bryan Adams’ name to the city. Night came, and mobs of people clad in leather jackets, studded black belts and stiletto-heeled boots lined up with tickets in hand to see one of the biggest heartthrobs of the 1980s — Bryan Adams.
Bryan Adams’ reputation as an artist grew quickly with the release of his third album, “Cuts Like a Knife,” in 1983. Soon after, he received his first Grammy nomination, establishing an international presence in the music world. Adams is actually Canadian, and this was made clear when, during the concert, a fan screamed “Happy Thanksgiving” to him as he was walking on stage.
Adam’s concert was far from ordinary: He played with only a pianist, not his typical grand band of percussion, bass and the like. It is exactly for this reason that he decided to name his latest tour “The Bare Bones Tour.” Adams explained that he wanted to break his music down to the “bare bones” in which the music being played is the entire focus: no backup dancers, no techno beats, no auto-tuning and no digitization — nothing that would take away from a real presence on stage.
In between songs, Adams told stories about both his music and life. At one point, he invited a woman in a flashy black dress and bleach-blonde hair to dance to one of his most famous songs, “If You Wanna Be Bad — Ya Gotta Be Good.” She shamelessly danced in a burlesque manner and threw her cup of beer aside to an audience member for her full performance.
The stage lights created a white, celestial outline of Adams’ figure, transforming him into a something of an ’80s music god. Furthermore, the passion visible in his strums on the guitar and the depth of emotion in his voice touched the audience in a way that can hardly be put into words. In Adams’ case, age is just a number. As the 53-year-old Adams sang “Heaven,” the crowd effortlessly — and hypnotically — swooned over his sonorous sounds.