In case nobody made you believe – you’re special

Lizzo – Lanxess Arena, Cologne; February 27th, 2023

I knew seeing Lizzo live would be brilliant and fun and wholesome. what I hadn’t counted on was the show being so emotional. It was a beautiful night in Cologne and I’m glad I got to be part of it.

Remembering the great show back in 2019, I had immediately grabbed a ticket for this one. Now it was finally time to go see it and I made my way to Cologne. arrived, got a wristband for the golden circle, stood in line and was surprised that the doors opened 30 minutes earlier than announced. No complaints here, it as nice to get out of the cold. Once inside I scored a perfect spot, front row at the catwalk, right on the side of he platform – wow! I had not expected I was going to be that close. 😀

Around 7:30 DJ Sophia Eris did a little set for us, getting us warmed up for the show. She’s been Lizzo’s DJ for ten years and I can see why. she had a fun mixture of songs that most people could sing along to and even ventured out on the catwalk to sing to us. A great start.

Shortly after she had left, Bree Runway hit the stage and kept up the good vibes. We cheered for her and sang along at her instructions. It was fun watching her and her music was a good fit for Lizzo. She told us she had a cold, but we gave her good energy to forget about that. 🙂

To have a song that everyone would know to sing to Bree covered ‘Paparazzi’. I’m sure we did her proud. She also got a call and response going “I say Bree, you say Runway” and promised to shake her ass towards whoever yelled loudest. 😀 All in all it was the perfect warm up.


Paparazzi (Lady Gaga cover)
All Night

Eventually, the arena went dark, music started and everyone was screaming with excitement. This was the moment we had all been waiting for. As lights on the screens started flashing rhythmically, we heard Lizzo’s voice “These are songs about love… I really believe that love for oneself and for others is what this world needs to be a better place… give yourself a little bit of love every day, treat yourself with respect… and then treat somebody else with the same respect… the experience … grows”. The stage lit up and Lizzo came up from the center in a fabulous, sparkling blue outfit, singing ‘The Sign’ and so many people sang along o all the words. It was beautiful. For ‘2 B loved (Am I ready)’ the big girls joined her. I watched them dance and a huge smile spread across my face.

There was so much love in the room and when she greeted us with “Welcome to the special tour”, introducing her band and the big girls, everyone cheered loudly. She asked us to say “Boom shaka lakka” and on the second try it worked. She loved the accent. At her request we helped her with the next song, singing “Im the one, I’m the one” and after being reassured that we were ready to dance too she sang ‘Soulmate’ for us.

Lizzo disappeared from the stage for a moment only to reappear to the tune of ‘Phone’ with an enormous purse, handing it to one of the big girls “, then she dug threw it, pulled a tiny purse out and launched into ‘Grrrls’ with “Hold my bag bitch”. We answered “Woo-hoo” to “Where my girls at?” and they continued straight into ‘Boys’. In the end she had us all jump up and down. 😀

Whenever I looked around people seemed so happy and I don’t know how to describe the atmosphere in the room other than one of warmth and kindness. The whole night I felt as if someone was giving me a good hug. The band and the dancers were brilliant, the screens served to enhance the show with either bringing them closer or displaying images in tune with the songs. My vantage point was perfect to see everything and I lost myself in he music.

‘Tempo’ started with a rocking guitar riff and awesome photos on the big screen. The song included lots of twerking – it was so much fun watching her and the big girls dance. I can’t remember when they first ventured out on the catwalk and to the platform, but I raised my hands with everyone else when they did. seeing them right in front of me was amazing.

For ‘Rumors’ the screen in the background filled with scrolling WhatsApp massages containing some wild rumors. It ended in a dead battery symbol and the arena went dark. ‘Scuse me’ stated with laser lights and Lizzo standing with her back to us, looking at her image on the screen, singing ‘Look up in the mirror, oh my God, it’s me’. With ‘Fitness’ we had only the band on stage and saw images of different exercises on the screen. Great stuff. At some point she told us that we were all big girls now, became them the moment we entered the arena, so when she was asking “Where are my big girls?” she meant all of us. Yeah!

Once again, she rose up from below stage, in a new fabulous outfit with a long flowing gown. she asked if it was OK for her to come a little closer and slowly walked out to the platform, singing the first lines of the beautiful ‘Naked’. Once she had reached the platform, she dropped the gown and stood in darkness with light projections playing across her body. Many people in the audience turned on their phone lights, filling the arena with stars. The song ended with the words “My body, my choice” projected on her.

“This is the part of the show I call therapy,” she said and instructed us to wave our phone lights “this light represents the love you have for yourself”. She put her gown back on, lounging on a sofa that had mysteriously appeared behind her while no-one was looking. She sang to ‘Jerome’ to take his ass home. 😀 As she walked back up to the main stage I realized the fabulous gown had leopard print. <3 She was joined by Sophia Eris for ‘Doo wop’. While Lizzo hurried backstage. Sophia continued the song and gave it over to the fabulous background singers in the band.

Lizzo appeared on the big screen again, saying “I love you, you are beautiful and you can do anything. Say it loud!” we did and then repeated it to ourselves with our eyes closed as instructed. “In case nobody told you today – you’re special!” and with these words she was back in a gorgeous rainbow dress for ‘Special’. In a moment she had us all waving her arms along with the music and by the end we were clapping along. The camera zoomed in on her and we could see she was crying. She told us that she wasn’t feeling well, but didn’t want to cancel the show, thanking us for the support and cheering that made her feel special. Yes you are! This moved me to tears and I wanted to give her a hug. Later she said that as she stood there she realized she did not have to be perfect, she just had to be herself. Word!

The show continued with ‘I’m every woman’ into ‘Like a girl’ and the big girls were back. For ‘Birthday Girl’ she asked if here were any birthdays in the building and wished them a happy birthday. Together with the big girls she was back on the platform for a while. She chatted with us, mentioning she’d been to the chocolate museum and then asked for different words in German before going into ‘Everybody’s gay’. ‘Water me’ followed with cool projections on the screen again. The light and screen show was amazing throughout.

During ‘Cuz I love you’ Lizzo came out to the platform again and someone threw her a rainbow flag that she draped across her shoulders. She didn’t manage the final note, mentioned “I cannot hit that note tonight, bitch, but once again the queer community has my back” and everyone sang with her. She asked for our phone lights again and got them all the way through ‘If you love me’. In the end, all the big girls handed her a rose each and she promptly gave them to her fans. someone by my side just didn’t catch it. She kept the last one for ‘Coldplay’ and threw it to one guy near the platform. He hugged it and looked so happy I thought he might faint. It was the cutest thing. The song ended with her playing the flute. <3

Before ‘Truth Hurts’ she asked the audience what the German word for “Bitch” is and after learning it concluded that today then she was “100% that Schlampe”. She wanted everyone to sing along and we did. Funnily enough I only knew the words because I had just attempted to play the song on ukulele. It was so much fun! All the big girls were twerking and Lizzo even played the flute while doing it. 😀

‘I love you Bitch’ had the whole screen full of flowers and ‘Good as hell’ ended the main set. Were we ready to feel that good? For sure. 😀 She waved goodbye and walked of stage, while the arena went dark. Then she appeared on the big screen again, asking “Did that bitch leave? Wait! I’m gonna get her.” only to realize she was trapped by the screen’s frame. “Help!” It was really funny.

The big disco ball above the platform lit up and she was back for ‘Juice’. I think it was after the song that she talked to the audience at length, but it might have been before the encore. Either way, the arena was lit up and Lizzo looked at people everywhere, talking to specific ones. “I see you, swinging that glitter jacket”, “I see you sailor moon” “You think I#m not talking to you, but I am”. It was really lovely. One woman and one man started twerking towards her to everyone’s amusement and when she asked a woman from the US if she’d come for the show, Lizzo told her to lie and say yes so she did. I also loved the banners I saw, my favorite being “Thank you for teaching me to love myself” :’) It was warm and beautiful and heartfelt. <3

The lights went off again and ‘About damn time’ was the final song and had everyone dancing and singing and cheering for the final time. What an amazing show that was. Lizzo waved goodbye as she left and I needed a moment to collect myself before I was ready to leave. I will sure carry that beautiful feeling with me for some time.


The Sign
2 Be Loved (Am I Ready)
Scuse Me
Break Up Twice
Doo Wop (That Thing) (Lauryn Hill cover)
I’m Every Woman (Chaka Khan cover)
Like a Girl
Birthday Girl/Happy Birthday
Everybody’s Gay
Water Me
Cuz I Love You
If You Love Me
Truth Hurts
I Love You Bitch
Good as Hell

About Damn Time

We were having the time of our lives – it was a real blast

Robbie Williams – Festhalle, Frankfurt; February 16th, 2023

Once again it was time for me to see Robbie Williams and once again he delivered. The ticket cost a shit ton of money, but it was worth it. What a thoroughly enjoyable show. I had a wonderful evening in great company and left with a happy smile on my face.

Since I had not managed to get tickets for the shows in Cologne (the first two that is), I had bought a ticket for Frankfurt and was on my way in the early afternoon. Everything went smoothly and I arrived at the venue about one hours before the doors opened. Everything was well organized, I got my wristband for the Golden Circle on arrival and the waiting time went by quickly.

Once inside, I arrived on one side of the catwalk, where it was getting crowded, so I walked around and found myself in front row, side stage. After being too far away in Munich last summer I could hardly believe my luck. what a great spot. soon after, S. and her husband arrived and we started chatting about concerts and the first time we had seen Robbie way back when. R., behind me, joined in and we all had a good evening together.

Support Lufthaus started at 8. and just like last summer I found them a bit boring. They did get the crowd going though and that being their job as a support act, all was well. By the time were done, the concert hall was pretty packed and everyone was excitedly waiting for the main event. It felt unreal to be front row and my smile grew bigger by the minute.

Finally the house lights went off and we could see movement on stage. The band appeared and in the backlight we saw Robbie at top of the stairs. The screens, which had so far shown his logo and the latest album cover, slowly lifted towards the ceiling and down he walked, kicking off the show with ‘Hey Wow Yeah Yeah’. He was all sparkly with golden trousers and a gold glitter top, contrasting with the black-clad band and dancers. I already had a big smile on my face, just watching them all.

When ‘Let me entertain you’ started, it felt very much like coming home. “One hand in the air… two hands in the air…bounce” and of course we did. The audience may have grown older along with Robbie, but we still know how to have fun! 😀 During the song he reintroduced himself, his band and his arse (dressed), claiming he was phenomenal. He actually is. 🙂 After the first two songs back to back he told us he was gonna show us how to entertain, doing a little dance and telling us what to do. The most important part being “You have to love your audience!”. ‘Land of 1000 dances’ then brought the point home.

At the start of ‘Monsoon’ Robbie told the band to stop, leaned on the table that held his drinks, catching his breath. “It’s because of long Covid, not my age,” he claimed. I’m pretty sure he only did it for comic effect, because the rest of the night he was never out of breath again. The song has always been one of my favorites and I loved hearing it. He changed he line about “spending one night with me” to ending on “…guarantees me a messy divorce”. 😀 He always has a catwalk, but this time there were stairs at the end of it and he ventured towards the barrier, shaking hands with the audience and leaning into them. Afterwards he joked that this was the “Let’s get Covid together”-mode and if none of the people he just went to had Covid they would now have his cold. He continued talking about people’s reactions from wanting to mother him to grabbing his arse and joked about someone waving him over only to withdraw when he actually went there.

We were invited to go on a 33 year musical odyssey with him and agreed to come along. Singing along to ‘Strong’, with the lyrics up on the big screen, the audience proved that they could be loud. Robbie talked about good and bad times in his career, highs and lows with songs asking people to save him and the next one being one of those. It was ‘Come undone’ and he didn’t have to sing much of it. The call and response with us singing every other line worked well. I still love this song very much. <3 During the “I’m your son” line, Robbie told us that he was still Germany’s son and at the end of the song a guitarist and a bass player joined him at the front for some awesome riffs.

He was very talkative the whole night and spoke about Take That for a while. About how they started and that he wanted to sing lead and how he left them later. He showed the video for their first ever single ‘Do what you like’, making funny comments all along about the “worst video of all time”, then stopped it part way in, right when a close up of a naked butt appeared on the screen. He talked about how young he was and described the situation of a model wiping his butt with a mop. Then he admitted that the arse on the screen was not his but Mark Owen’s 😀 I believe it was at this point that Robbie offered to show his arse, but when people really wanted to see it, he decided not too. That’s a first. 😀

To show that he actually did sing lead for one song, ‘Could it be Magic’ was next with the dancers in colorful costumes, but he stopped it midway, joking that nobody must have come to the show to hear that one. The next chapter of the story was about hanging out with Oasis at Glastonbury. When he asked who of us knew the festival, the person who shouted loudest had apparently come from the UK. For good measure, he played a great cover of ‘Don’t look back in Anger’. The Take That story ended with the band reuniting and ‘The Flood’ and everything bathed in blue light.

Next, Robbie spoke about having two rules in his life, #1) never getting married and #2) never having kids and how he broke both of them and it made him happy, then dedicated ‘Love my Life’ to his wife Aida and their four children. It was beautiful and came with a great sing-along. In the end, it rained confetti down on us and I raised my hands trying to catch a few.

Gary Nuttall joined Robbie at the end of the catwalk for the next song and we learned that he had been in the band for 26 years. At that moment I realized that not only the song lyrics, but pretty much everything Robbie said was on the teleprompter – he came prepared. Next he told us how, during a bad time in his life he met Geri Halliwell of the Spice Girls and she helped him with his struggles. He’d like to think that he helped her with hers too and wrote the next song about here. As a joke, he started singing ‘Wannabe’ then, before giving us ‘Eternity’. On the screens in the background, there was a string orchestra playing with him, sounding great. It has never been one of my favorite songs, but this version works for me. 🙂

They went back to the main stage and he picked up a bucket, telling us it was full of T-shirts. He gave out the first one for free and then said we had to earn it by dancing to the next song, where the best and worst dancers would get one. ‘Candy’ sure is a good song to dance to and people tried hard. The T-shirts seemed quite evenly distributed to all sides. In the crowd was a young girl of maybe 7 on a parent’s shoulders and Robbie threw one especially to her. <3

‘Feel’ was beautiful, with a great light show and the audience proving they all knew the words. *happy sigh* For ‘Kids’ he shared the lead vocals with two singers from hs band, who did an awesome job being Kylie. The brass section also left their mark on the song. “Wave your hands if you’re not with a man” kicked off ‘Rock DJ’. I think Robbie’s dance routine came straight from the video, but I admit I have not seen it in a long time. 😉 It was great. At the end, the stage went dark and he disappeared for a while.

When he returned, Robbie was wearing a black robe with golden cuffs, posing as he walked out and showing off his naked torso underneath. I recognized the song only when I head the first line – it was ‘No Regrets’ and a brilliant version at that with the string orchestra on the screens and the band sounding great (as they did all night).

Robbie spoke about having a great time and how both nights in Frankfurt were amazing because the audience was. Then he walked up to a woman in the crowd, asking for her name and coincidentally it was Stefanie. He said he saw her at a lot of shows and she was smiling with her eyes. while he put an arm around her she took the opportunity to lean onto his shoulder and since we all saw it on the screens a collective “awww” could be heard. He thanked her for giving him energy and dedicated ‘She’s the one’ to her. It was lovely and when the song was over, he went to her again and hugged her friends too, because they were being supportive and happy for her. <3

The final song was ‘Angels’ with all of us lighting up the hall with our phone lights and singing the first chorus a capella together. 🙂 The song will never not be amazing and is always a fitting close to a show. <3 When it was over, he bowed to and with his band and as they walked off stage, he came back to the catwalk, telling us Frankfurt was his new favorite city in Germany and thanking us again for the energy. Then he lead us in a final a capella sing-along of greatest hits, ending with ‘Angels’ and him finally walking off too, leaving us all a little dazed.

I loved the songs, the band, the sound, the lights, the audience and everything else about this show. It was an amazing night and I especially enjoyed seeing a gentler, kinder Robbie. Back when I first saw him, he was already a great entertainer, but at times a bit unkind to his fans, making jokes at their expense that were not always in god taste. He is still funny, but more considerate now and I’m enjoying it. So if you’re wondering if we still love you, Robbie – I for one, do. It was brilliant seeing you again.

The lights went on, I said goodbye to everyone around me and slowly made my way out, still smiling, happy I had decided to go to the show.


Hey Wow Yeah Yeah
Let Me Entertain You
Land of 1000 Dances (Chris Kenner cover)
Come Undone
Do What U Like (Take That song)
Could It Be Magic (Take That song)
Don’t Look Back in Anger (Oasis cover)
The Flood (Take That song)
Love My Life
Rock DJ

No Regrets
She’s the One (World Party cover)
Let me entertain you / Strong / Come Undone / Better Man / Angels ((A capella))

A final word on the insane ticket prices: It was worth it to me, but I do speak from a position of privilege and feel bad for every fan, who cannot afford to pay that much money. Eventually, I will reach my limit too and rather support smaller artist, who have a much tougher time making a living anyway. It was fun while it lasted.