I've never seen a person on stage as happy, grounded, and vivacious as Shara Worden. I tried to understand how someone could be so upbeat when singing such moving, emotional, and melancholic songs like "Gone Away"- and I think I came to a conclusion. She is a musician who desires only to be on stage, play her music, and sing her song to a receptive crowd, and this is just what she got at the Bowery Ballroom last night.
There was a flow of magnificent positive energy, all stemming from the entrance of a mysterious woman making balloon animals and crowns for the audience, as well as handing out painted party hats. From there, it went like a maniacal prom date (though, really, is there any other kind?). There was joy, blues, new love, lost love, "tainted love", and "freak out"s. Although I missed the strings- the band was gifted and created quite a wall of sound for us to savor throughout the show.
The singer Shara Worden is an operatic puppet master. She moves you to what ever emotion she wants you to move to. If she wants you smiling and nostalgic, then by God, she pulls the strings of her vocal chords that are linked directly to the muscles in your face and has you softly smiling and teary eyed. If she wants you sad and bitter from the bite of love lost then she sighs- moves her throat into a well pitched falsetto and has you frowning and introspective. Shara Worden controls the crowd in a way that is both alluring and intimidating. The best example of her puppet mastery lies in the performance of the lovely little song titled "Gentlest Gentleman" the chorus is simple, yet has resonance- "la la la la la la laa". She sings it out, then humbly asks the crowd to do the same. You never saw a room of hipsters respond so positively and so immediately! The entire crowd bellowed out the bitter sweet "la la la la la la laa"s like they wrote the song themselves! It felt as if we were singing around a camp fire in the middle of a chilly forrest trying to keep warm with the memories of love, love lost, and the acceptance of that.
Then there's the person Shara Worden. She is energetic, FUNNY, gracious, and humble. All things I appreciate in a musician, but seldom see. She had me laughing out loud with her approachable banter, her helium inhaling antics, and her incredibly inspiring story telling. She was vivacious- running around the stage, dancing, and interacting with the other musicians like they were in a school yard. I never felt so intimate with someone I wasn't even standing remotely close to. Her stance, her voice, her smile, they all make you feel welcome. It's like she is a house and she's inviting you in, asking you to make yourself at home. Her stories are a cup of tea, and her music is a glass of wine. Enjoy them thoroughly while you visit, and let them comfort you when it's time to go. I will definitely come and visit as soon as I possibly can.
Ms. Worden, I am waiting for my second My Brightest Diamond show. Thank you for a night of inspiration. The songs I recall hearing are: Golden Star. Inside Out. Dragonfly. Disappear. Gone Away. From the Top of the World. Pluto's Moon. Freak Out. Apple. Feeling Good. Inside a Boy. Tainted Love. Gentlest Gentleman. Hymne a L'Amour.