Dance Party from Start to Finish at The Fillmore with Fitz and the Tantrums

Dance Party from Start to Finish at The Fillmore with Fitz and the Tantrums

Photos by: Richard Thigpen


Some music is timeless, and some music is also timely. In a day where a lot of music sounds the same and vocal shortcomings are modified into something slightly more pleasant, Fitz and the Tantrums brought us something new to The Fillmore; something new that has a flavor of something much older. They are an LA band that could have been from any era; from the 60s to the 80s and into the present. Their sound and style cannot be pigeon-holed into one specific time or genre as they were influenced by the Motown classics, Northern Soul flowing out of the UK, and some new wave music in the 80s. Michael Fitzpatrick and Noelle Scaggs’ vocals out front groove with the funky bass lines, booming horns and tight drums beats to make Fitz and the Tantrums hybrid blend of musical stylings something extra special.


How does a band come together later in life and become successful? By writing some great songs and getting on the road; by playing anywhere you can. Fitz and the band began by playing to small crowds of 25 to 30 people every night. They saw this as a way to get their music out and build a following. Their approach to songwriting is by having the fans in mind and making music they love. They imagine their fans singing the songs back to them as they write. They are storytellers; telling tales of heartbreak, time on the road and challenging relationships. They have taken their fans down a funky road and the fans have followed.


Fitz wrote his first song for the band on an old church organ that he got through an ex-girlfriend. It goes to show you shouldn’t ever burn bridges in life because you really never know what may be the catalyst for future opportunities. From the very beginning when college classmate and saxophone player in the band James King connected Fitz and Noelle together, they knew there was something magical and special with the chemistry between the band members. They have now been together 8 plus years together and are family.


As soon as they started playing on Wednesday at the Fillmore, the closeness of the band was obvious. Fitz and Noelle danced together and their bodies mirrored each other as they moved around the stage  Many time, their bodies were grinding and moving in tandem together in a seductive entwinement. It didn’t really take long to get the crowd going. Crowd participation was not optional as Fitz was not afraid to make eye contact and call you out if you weren’t dancing.


Yes, he caught me at one point and said “you can’t stand their and not dance.” They kicked off with “Get Right Back” and Fitz immediately began working the crowd while Noelle’s energy and dueling vocals made the crowd bounce along with the beat. Their energy never stopped as they gave The Fillmore 15 more songs.  They played all the favorites: “Don’t Gotta Work it Out,” “Out of My League,” “Complicated,” “Money Grabber,” and ended the night with a two song encore of “6 AM” and “Walker.”


Barnaby “Barns” Courtney was the opening act for Fitz and the Tantrums.  Barns is an indie singer-songwriter out of the UK. He has performed with a few other indie bands, but has found his groove as a solo artist. His set was shortened and he came out a little later than expected, but once he came out on stage he showed the swagger of a veteran rock star with the chops to back it up.


I wasn’t sure what to expect from Barns, but he got the crowd going with his three piece band. He is best known for his 2015 hit “Fire” with its infectious, somewhat moody rhythm and chorus. He is surely someone to look out for in the future.


Great show by Barns and Fitz and the Tantrums at the Fillmore in Charlotte. There are still a few more dates scheduled in 2016 in November, and I would encourage anyone to get out and see them as they come to a town near you. Even if you have to drive a few hours to see them it would be well worth your time. I talked to a number of people who made a special trip into Charlotte to see one of their favorite bands perform.  Fitz and the Tantrums did not disappoint and made many new fans as well this week in Charlotte.

Full gallery from the night can be seen here.


Fitz and the Tantrums 2016 Come Get Your Love Fall Tour

Upcoming | Local Dates


The Dome at Oakdale Theatre

Wallingford, CT


The Fillmore

Philadelphia, PA


Sands Bethlehem Event Center

Bethlehem, PA


House of Blues

Boston, MA


The Paramount

Huntington, NY



Niagara Falls, NY



Detroit, MI


Madison Theater

Covington, KY


State Theatre

Minneapolis, MN


Pot of Gold Music Festival

Chandler, AZ


Barns Courtney Tour Dates


The Dome W/ Fitz & The Tantrums

Wallingford, CT, United States


The Fillmore W/ Fitz & The Tantrums

Philadelphia, PA, United States


Sands Bethlehem W/ Fitz & The Tantrums

Bethlehem, PA, United States


House of Blues W/ Fitz & The Tantrums

Boston, MA, United States


The Paramount W/ Fitz & The Tantrums

Huntington, NY, United States


Rapids Theatre W/ Fitz & The Tantrums

Niagara Falls, NY, United States


The Fillmore W/ Fitz & The Tantrums

Detroit, MI, United States


Madison Theatre W/ Fitz & The Tantrums

Covington, KY, United States


State Theatre W/ Fitz & The Tantrums

Minneapolis, MN, United States



London, United Kingdom


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