by Brittney Corridean
It was a perfectly weathered Friday night and just up the street from the summer’s happening Harbor Park, Dwight and Nicole performed at the TLA. Right when you walked in, the venue’s floor ramps down towards the stage. Friends, families and lovers alike gathered close to the bottom and watched the duo perform.
The two of them had a quintessential look of glee pouring out of them. Not only did Nicole Nelson’s vibrant voice wake up the whole room, but her ear to ear smile was so warm and genuine I’m pretty sure the audience fell in love. One of the songs they played was “Hip Shake Baby” where both Dwight Ritcher and Nelson take part in the vocals. This song actually had everyone shaking their hips in a soulful form that swayed to the bluesy/jazz guitar sound. You could feel the audience at ease and just being present in the moment.
The band moved to their own music as well, really feeling what was coming out of them. Nelson hung tight to her tambourine that only accented her playful movements while Ritcher’s body followed the sound of his guitar. It was really engaging to see the passion and devotion they put into their music be displayed on stage.
Also performed off their new album, Shine On, was “On Top of the World” which Nelson stated in a recent interview that this reflects the outlook she has on life. It was a nice preview to some of those who have yet to catch their most recent work.
After Dwight and Nicole’s performance, Puss n Boots came out and took over. This trio features Norah Jones, along with Sasha Dobson and Catherine Popper. Their sound is a blend of relaxation and country, melding with their soft songs. The performance started out quite therapeutic for the audience, but an accent of Texas honky tonk came through. The trio was very playful with the crowd and made it an enjoyable experience the whole way through.
The end of the night had everyone in a good mood from the enchanting tunes that filled the walls of the TLA. Both bands performed wonderfully. Dwight and Nicole really made an impression with their personalities. They truly are fantastic people with music that only emphasizes how kind and empathetic they really are.