Harrington: Here are my Top 10 concerts of 2011 – #1 NKOTBSB

Source: [ MercuryNews.com ]

There were a lot of late nights for me in 2011, but looking back at the 100-plus shows I reviewed — and the dozens of others I just tweeted or blogged about — it’s pretty hard to complain about my schedule.

After all, I got to see a ton of great shows, representing so many different kinds of musical flavors, held in the Bay Area this year. My Top 10 list, narrowed down from what I believed to be roughly 20 very worthy candidates, contains equal amounts of pop, hip-hop, rock and R&B/soul. (Sorry, country fans, your favorite genre only got one nod.) The tally could have been even more diverse, had I decided to also draw from the numerous jazz shows I saw in 2011.

One interesting thing to note: All of my top gigs happened in the San Jose and Oakland areas — underscoring what regular concertgoers have known for years — the Bay Area’s live music scene is no longer dominated by San Francisco.

Here are Top 10 concerts of 2011. Next week: my picks for the best records of the year.

1 NKOTBSB, July 2, HP Pavilion, San Jose: Quit laughing. I’m telling you that NKOTBSB — the cleverly named co-headlining tour by the New Kids on the Block (NKOTB) and the Backstreet Boys (BSB) — was 2011’s top show. I’m a sucker for expertly paced pop spectacles that sweep fans away from beginning to end. And that was this show in a nutshell. I’m not a big fan of either band, but that didn’t stop me from singing along with
true Backstreet Pride on “Shape of My Heart” and acting like a New Kid nut on “Step by Step” on this night.

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