Sunday, 6 March 2011

Roxy Rocks Sydney Entertainment Centre, by Eva Rinaldi - 25th February 2011

Photography by Eva Rinaldi

Roxy Music rocked the house tonight - the house being the iconic Sydney Entertainment Centre, confirmed for demolition in about a year occurring to various Australian media reports.

Who could have missed the sharp dressing and handsome one - Bryan Ferry, who has being doing the media rounds in Australia over the past few days.

Yes, Australia certainly seems to be hooked on the Ferry 'love drug', and judging by tonight, we seem to have caught 'Roxy Fever' in a big way too.

Roxy Music showed Sydney just why they are seen as one of the most influential art rock bands of all time.  Ferry is essentially an artist, plus performer and musician, and since 2001 has reunited with the band - Phil Manzanera (guitar), Andy Mackay (saxophone and oboe) and Paul Thompson (drums and percussion). This arty and unique blend is yet another classic example of the ongoing resurgence of 80's popular music.

My favorite performances tonight were Avalon and Jealous Guy.

Oh, the rumour mill has been buzzing that Elle Macpherson aka 'The Body', was spotted backstage, and later seen jumping into a limo with Ferry, but its only a rumour and not confirmed. In days prior the two had been publicly spotted together, albeit at Ferry's CD and book signing at Myer Sydney, but only a fool would have thought it was all business - it was most definitely business with pleasure, pleasure being something Mr Ferry knows a thing or two about, judging by one or two of his hits.

For the record, the Sydney Entertainment Centre appeared to be close to capacity, and many of the paying public took up the 2 for the price of 1 offering, and in Sydney on a hot, sexy Friday night, that's not particularly surprising.

Ferry did perform some numbers from his new release, 'Olympia', but for my money you can't beat the classics.

Ferry and the band engaged with the audience and genuinely looked like they were really enjoying performing for Sydney.  If they keep up the standard, the rest of their Australian tour will be a success.

Thank you Roxy Music for giving it your all, and I dare say that for many folks in Sydney you have set the scene for a Roxy, loving Friday night and weekend.

We shall look forward to you doing Sydney again, but the question has to be asked... next tour, will it be Elle, Olympia (Kate Moss), or another lucky lady clutching onto Ferry.

'Let's stick together' you say. I say "Australia will stick by you for as long as you continue to brilliantly entertain us." Long live your music, Roxy style.

Rihanna warms up Sydney for Mardi Gras, by Eva Rinaldi - 4th March 2011

Australia had been looking forward to the return of Rihanna, and tonight she didn't disappoint with her 'Last Girl On Earth' tour.

Seven hours earlier she tweated 'Sydney U ready to play?'  Seems were certainly were.

Her hottest current hit is 'Only Girl' (In The World), but most major music press predict that it won't be long before she soon finds another number to eclipse it.

Sydney's Acer Arena looked to be near capacity and the crowd was pumped, as screams of joy were heard well before it was announced Rihanna was heading to the stage. The excited fans reached out forming a sea of hands.

For those of you still getting more familiar with Rihanna, let's groove into a bit of background.

Robyn Rihanna Fenty is known to the world as just Rihanna, joining that first name only required club.

R is a Barbadian R&B recording artist and songwriter. Born in Barbados, Rihanna moved to the U.S at the age of 16 to pursue a recording career under the tutelage of record producer Evan Rogers. She went on to sign a contract with Def Jam Recordings after auditioning for then-label head Jay-Z.

It was in 2005 that Rihanna released her debut studio album entitled Music of the Sun, which reached the top ten of the Billboard 200 chart and features the Billboard Hot 100 hit single "Pon de Replay." Less than a year later, she released her second studio album, A Girl Like Me (2006), which peaked within the top five of the Billboard albums chart, and produced her first US number one hit single, "SOS", as well as Billboard Hot 100 top ten entries "Unfaithful" and "Break It Off".

Rihanna's third studio album, Good Girl Gone Bad (2007), peaking at number two on the Billboard 200, featured five top ten hits including three US number one hit singles—"Umbrella", "Take a Bow" and "Disturbia"—and the worldwide hit "Don't Stop the Music". The album was nominated for nine Grammy Awards, winning Best Rap/Sung Collaboration for "Umbrella," which features Jay-Z.

Rihanna has sold more than 25 million albums and 45 million singles worldwide. She has achieved nine number-one singles on the Billboard Hot 100 since first appearing on the chart on June 11, 2005, which is the most by any artist during that duration.

Rihanna has sold over 5,564,000 album units in the US. She has sold over 10 million records in the UK. Billboard named Rihanna the Digital Songs Artist of the 2000s decade. She has received dozens of industry awards and commendations including the 2007 World Music Awards for World's Best-Selling Pop Female Artist and Female Entertainer of the Year, as well as the 2008 American Music Awards for Favorite Soul/R&B Female Artist and Favorite Pop/Rock Female Artist.

I was pleased to learn the she proudly serves as one of Barbados's honorary cultural ambassadors. In January 2010, Rihanna received two Grammy Awards for Jay-Z's 2009 single "Run This Town". In February 2011, Rihanna snatched a Grammy Award for Best Dance Recording, as well as receiving a Brit Award for Best International Female Solo Artist.

Back to tonight, unfortunately as a photographer, I was only permitted to stay and shoot for 3 songs.  I didn't get to hear my favorite 'Te Amo', but I must say I loved her colourful and floral dress and her vocals. Her energy is also so radiant and just makes your want to dance along with her.

Rihanna's current release is entitled Loud, but the diva has a soft spot for Rated R, which went down well with fans and industry insiders. She says on her albums "I'm gonna miss the Rated R era too, but nothing compares to the album I just made," Rihanna said, adding, "I made sure not to let you down with my music. You guys are always defending me, so now you’ve got some great songs to justify it. I didn’t want to go backward and remake Good Girl Gone Bad. I wanted the next step in the evolution of Rihanna, and it’s perfect for us".

She's strongly rumoured to be appearing tomorrow night at the Sydney Mardi Gras but in what capacity I don't know. Mind you, she was spotted leaving a sex shop in Sydney earlier today, so she's should be well prepared.

Sexy, sassy, amazing talented and all diva... that's Rihanna, and boy can she move, groove and sing up a storm. The gods and goddesses above must have tipped her off about Mardi Gras, or was it some of the cleaver dicks at Frontier Touring and MG Promotions, that tied her into Sydney's sexiest event of the year. Rihanna and Mardi Gras less than 24 hours later. Now that's a sexy daily double if there ever was. Rumour is she's already planning another tour down under next year. Yes, the love (or lust) affair in mutual. Thanks Rihanna, and I will be looking out for you tomorrow. Something tells me that you will be wearing either a bit or alot of pink, and a dash of colourful flowers, matching one the dresses you wore tonight. Go girl.


Rihanna official website

Michael Coppel Presents

Acer Arena

Eva Rinaldi Photography

Rihanna Daily Fan website

Michael Bublé: Sydney, Australia Loves You Like Crazy, by Eva Rinaldi - 14th February 2011

I'd been waiting for this night for what must be almost a decade.  Finally, my night...our Crazy Love night.

Michael teased me this past Thursday at the presser conducted at the Overseas Passenger Terminal. I could tell then that his concerts in Australia were going to be very special, and tonight - the evening of Valentines Day, I can confirm that they are.

Even though Sydney's Acer Arena holds over 20,000, Michael's gift helps make the audience feel they are getting treated to an intimate experience. Well, he certainly set the scene and warmed me up beautifully for my intimate experience later into the night. On that vein however, I can tell you that his 'Crazy Love' CD does help set the mood.

By my estimation, the jazz sensation is certainly worth $149 plus. Like the greats, you have to experience a live concert to truly appreciate the musical genius.

The multi-talented performer is now close to two million album sales in Australia, with 25 million achieved on a global scale. Yes, us Aussies are raving fans. This tour was Michael's eighth trip to Australia, so the love affair is most definitely a two way street.

My personal favorite number is 'Haven't Met You Yet' which is already five times platinum in Australia.

His songs inspire love, warmth and affection, which was perfect timing for me, having rekindled my relationship with my special man.

Some of Michael's interpretations of other artists that really did it for me on this Valentines evening were Sway, Kissing A Fool, How Can You Mend A Broken Heart?, and Heartache Tonight.

The warmth and love vibrated via Michael was experienced by young and old, and I witnessed a young fan who must have only been about 10 years old present Michael with a gift early into the concert performances, and he magically incorporated this into the show, making all of us feel that we received the present too.

He shared his thoughts on love with "My songs have always been about love. Mine and everyone else's. But this time it was a little more extreme, and I dug deeper - way deeper."

I had read earlier in the week that Michael said "I just love getting in front of people. It's so important to be in touch with your audience. They've paid their money, I want them to be entertained. If they want to cry or laugh or dance or sing or yell, they can do whatever they want. My responsibility is just to take them away." Oh yes, you took me away.

Michael, from my heart thank you for helping add some 'Crazy Love' intimacy to my partners and own evening and life. I would also like to publicly thank Buble's publicity team, Dainty Consolidated Entertainment and Live Guide, for helping make me one of the blessed and fortunate few photographers in Sydney to capture your gift close up. My love now has more focus, and its thanks to you. Let the passion, talent and performer bring out the performance in you, and if your single, that's ok too.


Michael Bublé



Michael Bublé official website

Eva Rinaldi Photography

Eva Rinaldi Flickr

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