Demi Lovato’s return to Hershey marks a continued growth for the artist who was here 2 years ago in support of her last release. Since that time Lovato has become a more confident individual and an icon for women who are proud of who the are as a person. This summer she has hit the road with her long time friend Nick Jonas for the Future Now tour which saw both artists sharing the stage together as they delivered a truly memorable show for the crowd in attendance at the Hershey Stadium.
Nick Jonas was the first to hit the stage and as he ran through 6 songs it was clear that he has re-invented himself as an artist over the past few years. We last saw him at Made in America during the early run of his solo career but his album hadn’t dropped just yet so it was hard to tell where he would end up.
Arguably the Jonas Brother’s splitting up was one of the best things for his career because he was able to dive into some heavier material that his previous venture wouldn’t allowed him to embrace vocally. He didn’t shy away from his past and spoke about being at Hershey before with his brothers during his set but he didn’t dwell on the past because his future is much more interesting and entertaining.
Jonas commanded a large stage with minimal effort, clearly the years with his former band have come into play there because he looked like a seasoned veteran even though he was singing mostly new material from his recent solo release. However before he got to some of the biggest songs from his new artistic venture the stage went dark and Jonas walked off stage, The Future Now tour pulled a fast one on the crowd as intro music began to play and Demi Lovato appeared on stage flanked by flashing colored strobes across the vast stage.
There is no doubt that Demi Lovato can work the stage and the crowd, as she did so effortlessly in Hershey. From the first song to the last she poured raw emotion into her songs in a way that doesn’t come through in her studio recordings. We are used to hearing her songs on the radio in a very polished version but when performed live her pitch fluctuates and the true feeling behind the songs are able to shine which breathes a new life into many of the songs.
For example “Neon Lights,” when performed live is rather different than the album version containing many signature vocal flourishes of Lovato’s voice that were fine tuned for production and release to radio. There is no doubt that Lovato shines bright in a live setting, her music set with production and lighting cues as well as her live voices makes for a wonderful pop show that is hard to match. Jonas retook the stage at one point in the night to allow for a quick outfit change but Lovato soon joined him to perform his newest hit “Close.”
The Future Now tour was a meeting of the contemporary music minds and a treat for fans of all ages and types. It will be interesting to see how these two artists move on after this tour because this was a tour contamination years in the making that is going to be hard for them both to top.