I was incredibly excited late last year when I heard Lulu was to do a solo UK tour and was looking forward to catching her live in her own show and I wasn't disappointed when I joined many other fans at St David’s Hall on Monday evening to catch the music legend on her latest solo tour.
With a set-list that included songs which have inspired her career as well as tracks from her latest album Making Life Rhyme, Lulu got the show off to an electrifying start as with a cover of Republica’s Ready to Go. The pace was kept upbeat as she followed up with her 1990s smash hit Relight My Fire before launching into the soulful I Put My Trust in You.
“I’m very happy and pleased to still be here” Lulu said when pausing to speak to the audience. Reflecting on her fifty years in music she continued ”its something to be grateful for, I live in a place of gratitude and its pretty fabulous not to be searching, rushing and wishing for things.”
Been one of popular music’s most enduring performers, Lulu still has a soulfully rich voice to savor as she revealed delivering renditions of Unchain My Heart, Try A Little Tenderness and her own composition I Don’t Want to Fight, a worldwide hit for Tina Turner and performed in concert as a duet.
There was also a beautiful tribute to the Bee Gees in which Lulu recalled her marriage to Maurice Gibb and how she witnessed the band reform after time apart to record Run To Me of which did an impromptu performance followed by her versions of To Love Somebody and Gotta Get A Message To You.
Lulu also served up a handful of her own classic hits, the Bowie collaboration The Man Who Sold the World, a reggae rendition of To Sir with Love and of course her 1964 debut smash Shout which had the audience on their feet for the finale.
There couldn't have been a better way to liven up a Monday evening with multitudes of class, charisma and coolness from Lulu and her band. Long may she continue and hopefully make a return visit to Wales soon!
- A version of this review by Andy Howells appeared in The South Wales Argus entertainment supplement, The Guide on May 22, 2015.