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Jack Johnson, Ziggy Marley – REVIEW

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Jack Johnson’s Fans Meet The Moonlight at the iThink Amphitheater. Reggae powerhouse Ziggy Marley opens.

August 19th, 2022

Despite weather delay, Jack Johnson and Ziggy Marley deliver a hopeful, authentic performance.

At 7:15 pm in the iThink Financial Amphitheater, Jack Johnson would have been strumming his guitar and looking out at an audience set against the background of a rich Florida sunset. That is, of course, if the unpredictable Florida weather didn’t have other plans. After an over two-hour delay due to turbulent storms, Johnson and opener Ziggy Marley must have felt that their fans had earned an incredible show, as they delivered optimistic, upbeat performances that exceeded expectations.

Marley, who opened the show at 9:20 pm, established his resounding, ethereal sound with “Circle of Peace,” made more ethereal by the lightning streaking across the sky as the storm receded. Back-up singers sharing the stage with Marley enhanced his performance with synchronized dances and elegant vocals.

Johnson and Marley’s musical abilities equally match and complement one another. In one of the night’s highlights, Johnson lent his laid-back, folk sound to Marley’s “High Tide or Low Tide” in a duet, creating a harmonious synthesis of their styles.

In fact, Johnson and Marley have more in common than just their musical prowess. Both musicians sported a casual t-shirt and jeans combination and sang with their eyes closed, a visual suggestion of the deep reverence and appreciation the two men have for their craft. Johnson joked that he has to close his eyes while singing in order to concentrate on the lyrics. “How am I supposed to read one thing while singing something else?” he laughed, as fans held up signs in the pit.

Johnson cultivates an easy familiarity with his audience as he plays, through both his down-to-earth music and conversational anecdotes. As he strummed the chords of “Flake,” he shared the story of playing the song for his girlfriend at the time, who is now his wife. “She didn’t seem very interested,” he said, to a wave of laughter from the audience.

Through his easy-going way of telling stories and balance of both fan-favorites and new songs, Johnson easily won over the crowd. His most recent album, Meet The Moonlight, has garnered a variety of positive reviews since its June 24th release this year. While fans don’t sing along to newer songs as boisterously as they do to popular tracks like “Sitting, Waiting, Wishing,” their swaying and applause affirms positive reception of the album.

However, Johnson’s philanthropy is as much a part of his character as music is, which was reflected at the concert, where all premium and platinum ticket proceeds were donated to the Johnson Ohana Foundation and the All At Once Non-Profit Partners.

The technical aspects of the show, often overlooked, were exceptional. Both Marley and Johnson’s voices could be heard clearly throughout the amphitheater, even over the sporadic sound of rainfall. Behind Johnson, a large panel of lights casted images and colors across the stage. Despite the show starting well into the evening, orange and yellow lights helped to create a midnight sunset, serving as a visual representation of Johnson’s organic, serene lyrics.

Even after spending two hours outside in the rain, Johnson’s fans filled the seats of the iThink Amphitheater, proving the timeless, healing effect of his music.

  • Jack Johnson performs at iThink Amphitheater. © South Florida Insider

  • Ziggy Marley performs at iThink Amphitheater. © South Florida Insider

  • Ziggy Marley performs at iThink Amphitheater. © South Florida Insider

  • Ziggy Marley performs at iThink Amphitheater. © South Florida Insider

  • Ziggy Marley performs at iThink Amphitheater. © South Florida Insider

  • Ziggy Marley performs at iThink Amphitheater. © South Florida Insider

  • Ziggy Marley performs at iThink Amphitheater. © South Florida Insider

  • Ziggy Marley performs at iThink Amphitheater. © South Florida Insider

  • Ziggy Marley performs at iThink Amphitheater. © South Florida Insider

  • Ziggy Marley performs at iThink Amphitheater. © South Florida Insider

  • Ziggy Marley performs at iThink Amphitheater. © South Florida Insider

  • Jack Johnson performs at iThink Amphitheater. © South Florida Insider

  • Jack Johnson performs at iThink Amphitheater. © South Florida Insider

  • Jack Johnson performs at iThink Amphitheater. © South Florida Insider

  • Jack Johnson performs at iThink Amphitheater. © South Florida Insider

  • Jack Johnson performs at iThink Amphitheater. © South Florida Insider

  • Jack Johnson performs at iThink Amphitheater. © South Florida Insider

  • Jack Johnson performs at iThink Amphitheater. © South Florida Insider

  • Jack Johnson performs at iThink Amphitheater. © South Florida Insider

  • Jack Johnson performs at iThink Amphitheater. © South Florida Insider

  • Ziggy Marley performs at iThink Amphitheater. © South Florida Insider

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