Best known for her vocals in Macklemore’s “Same Love,” Mary Lambert proved that she is a force to be reckoned with all on her own.
The GLBT, women’s and body positivity advocate performed 14 songs, old and new, to a crowd of 300 in the Lory Student Center Theater on Thursday night.
“This was the first time I have seen her, but I was pretty familiar with who she is and this was the first time I got to hear so much other than the popular stuff,” said Colleen McAnallen, senior psychology major.
The night began with powerhouse Jillette Johnson who enamored the crowd with her charm, sarcasm and strong vocals, reminiscent of Stevie Nicks meets ZZ Ward.
Johnson has been opening for Mary Lambert since her tour began last month, an experience that she says has been a gift.
“It’s been wonderful,” Johnson said. “Mary is a really graceful human and she makes everything an absolute joy. She’s surrounded herself with some really great people and she’s also great herself, so it’s been amazing.”
After a short set break, Lambert and her guitar-playing best friend Tim were welcomed to the stage with an impressive round of applause.
“I love you so much already,” Lambert said. “You guys know how to treat a woman.”
Throughout the night, Lambert drew the audience in with a balance between her brash sense of humor and thought-provoking opinions on social issues in a combination of poetry, spoken word and pop music tropes. She tackled issues of self worth, equal rights, bullying and shared her own struggles with bipolar disorder.
“I think it’s important to talk about (mental illness) because I’m a normal person,” Lambert said. “It’s important to de-stigmatize … we are all a little nuts.”
Both Lambert and Johnson write lyrics challenging the norm and Johnson appreciated the reaction she received.
“CSU is awesome and very enthusiastic,” she said. “It seems like people really like music here and listen thoughtfully, which I personally really appreciate. My favorite music fans are people who really are in the moment and digest everything that’s going on, which is not always the case. But I felt like you guys were really thinking about what you were listening to.”
The show was sponsored by the Residence Hall Association, WGAC, GLBTQQA and Ram Events.
Ram Events was excited to bring Lambert to CSU from the idea’s inception, according to Sara Robbins, senior communication studies major and lead for Ram Events.
“It’s amazing to watch these things grow from just an idea in someone’s mind to an actual event,” she said. “It’s kind of like making a dream come true.”
In its entirety, the show conveyed the ideas of self love and acceptance.
“You’re valued. You’re important,” Lambert said. “You’re worthy of love and all things good.”