Looking for artists that sound just as good as- if not better than- their albums need only attend an Ari Lennox show. The R&B queen sold out an ecstatic performance at The Van Buren in Phoenix last week and had fans hanging over the barricade in any attempt to get as close as possible.
Lennox took the stage behind a filmy white curtain which lifted to reveal her decked out in a chic leopard print coat and the perfect paparazzi shades. Joined by a live band and three stunning backup singers, her voice was nearly drowned out by the packed room’s upraised voices.
It was frigid outside but inside only kept heating up as Lenox ran through a slew of straight hits- from “Waste of My Time” to “New Apartment” to the cheeky “Boy Bye”, the audience knew every word and shouted out their love in between songs as well.
Lennox, for her part, was visibly thrilled by the reception and thanked her lovely crowd numerous times during the show’s brief interludes. Not wanting to waste any time, she pulled an outfit change mid-song and kept the party rolling with “I Been” and “Unloyal”- an ode to toxic behavior that had the girls and gays snapping along.
The show spanned 21 songs but no one in that room wanted the night to end. Lennox closed things out with “Shea Butter Baby” and “Pressure”, bathing The Van Buren in soft pink light for the perfect end to a perfect evening. She’s already a superstar but a few more nights like these are sure to propel her into a whole new stratosphere- and we can’t wait to see the rooms she’s playing when that happens.
Check out more photos from the show!
Story and photos by Olivia Khiel