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Janelle Monae, Bruno Mars, Mayer Hawthorne

One of the best aspects of writing about music is the access to all manner of live shows. Conversely, all those shows can also make a person a bit jaded, especially after a prolonged series of gigs that offer nothing particularly groundbreaking. Then along comes a transcendent artist like Janelle Monae, who spent the past year opening eyes and ears to her incredible talent on tours opening for the diverse likes of No Doubt, Prince and Paramore. It was Monae’s gig opening for Of Montreal at In The Venue that got my attention; her combination of stunning vocal prowess, multi-media visuals, dance breakdowns and prowling stage presence was unlike anything I’d ever seen, and easily the best live performance I saw in 2010—all of it done in about 50 minutes, as an opening act at a dingy rock club.

Date: May 30, 2011
Time: 6 p.m.
Phone: 801-863-7469
Address: 800 W. University Pkwy, Orem, 84058
Where: UCCU Center