Carla Morrison - Musical Instrument Museum - 5/23/2013
Before belting into "Compartir," Carla Morrison addressed the crowd: "I never thought this was gonna happen. I'm so happy to be playing here tonight. I didn't grow up here, but I lived here for six years, and I consider this place my hometown, too."
After that, she moved into "Tu Orgullo" and moved across the stage doing her own version of the moonwalk: the high-heel-wearing type. Accompanied by a versatile four-piece band -- a bassist, a drummer, and two multi-instrumentalists who covered ukeleles, guitars, keyboards, samplers, trumpets, and background vocals -- Carla Morrison skirted across the stage dancing and singing, swiftly, but never without missing a beat; sometimes the spotlight wasn't able to catch up with her as she danced her way from one side to the other.
Hearing Carla Morrison sing is spiritual -- her voice rose from her small frame to conquer the world-class acoustics of the MIM, which made a perfect fit for the erstwhile hometown crooner. Seeing her live is bearing witness to a true force: Her energy is infectious. She sings without fear, almost as if she were alone in a room, with just her voice and her instruments. She's not one to stand still, though, and all night she worked the stage with sweet two-step dance moves in rhythm with the beat of the music while playing one of multiple instruments. She played the tambourine, the ukulele, the guitar, the drum, and used that voice of hers to capture the whole crowd.
The way she moved sometimes felt spiritual, as if she was engaged in prayer, and this was her worship. She would raise her arms, or wave her arms in tune with the music, as though she were channeling some special musical source.
Before she launched into, "Pajaritos del Amor," she said, by way of an introduction, "If the world is shaking, it's not because it's happy; it's because it's out of fear. The world needs our love, and it's not just because I'm a girl, and I believe in that stuff. It's because it's true." She encouraged the crowd to "Be free like los pajaritos del amor," which made the crowd yell in excitement. She dove into whistling like a lovebird for parts of the song. Who else can get away with mimicking a bird's song during a concert?
"I have plenty of messages throughout my concert, sorry," she said at one point, laughing. "I try to remind the public that we're all the same. It doesn't matter if you're gay or if you're not gay. You can't really manage the way your heart beats or the direction it takes. So please do not hate what you do not know. It's just love, and love is love."
She then started playing the familiar strumming pattern to her song, "Eres Tu." The music video for the song features Carla helping to organize a wedding for a gay couple. She mentioned that in her country, most people are still unwilling to accept gays, but if people put themselves in another person's shoes, they can understand each other better.
After shouts of "Otra! Otra! Otra!" she went into an encore.