Berklee alumni from the pop duo Karmin took center stage at the LGBT Pride Festival this past Saturday at Government Center in Boston.
Lead singer Amy Heidemann and her keyboard-playing partner Nick Noonan kicked off the concert with “Boom”, a song they wrote specifically for the festival. The pride-happy crowd loved it; iPhones interspersed among shaking heads and arms up in the air were sure signs of the crowd’s enthusiasm. The twosome continued with their US Billboard #1 Dance hit “Hello” and “I Told You So” from the same album. For the performance of their breakthrough YouTube cover “Look At Me Now” (with over 83 million views), they invited a dreadlock-haired girl from the crowd to sing Chris Brown’s part. Seemingly reserved at first, the girl stood next to Amy on stage and managed some smooth rap lines. Karmin certainly interacts with the people well.
After playing “Crash Your Party” and a new song from their upcoming album this June, Amy and Nick took a more serious approach and mentioned their performance as part the first public event since the Boston Marathon bombings. “We both agree: we’ve never been more proud to be from a place before,” explained Amy, who met Nick at Berklee College of Music. She shared her disbelief at being able to play for such a large crowd, where only a few years before she and her music mates lugged their instruments and “busked” (played on street) for passersby in the very same area she was now performing. Karmin’s aside was a fitting tribute to Boston on a day to celebrate being proud of your identity.
They concluded their high-energy performance with “Brokenhearted”, their US #1 Dance and Top 10 Pop hit. Overall, Karmin put on an outstanding set: they riled the audience, made themselves friendly, and managed a spot-on pop performance. I’m sure they will be invited to play at Boston Pride again next year.