OneRepublic at The Woodlands, 8/22/2014
Before One Republic was about to play "Preacher," a song from their latest album about lead singer Ryan Tedder's preacher grandfather, Tedder gave us a little background on his childhood and what it was like living under the eyes of a devout religious elder. He told the crowd, "If I could describe preachers with one word, it would be 'consistent'. They are consistent in everything they do."
OneRepublic is pretty consistent, too.
As a band, OneRepublic seems to stay out of the spotlight. We never see them in the news, never see any controversial interview quotes -- they're just that kind of band. However, the medium most friendly to OneRepublic is the radio, and people may not realize how prevalent their music has been on the Top 40 airwaves for the past five or six years.
The Colorado-formed band has a lot of hits: "Apologize," "Counting Stars," "Love Runs Out," "Good Life," "Stop and Stare," "Secrets" and more. As they played to a full Woodlands Pavilion crowd Friday night, I was surprised how many songs I knew.
The secret to OneRepublic's muted yet explosive success is lead singer Ryan Tedder, whom many people may not know spends a big chunk of his time writing songs for other pop stars. This trend, writing for other people being a pretty big pop act in your own right, has sort of become a thing in 2014 with breakouts like Sia rising up the charts, but Tedder is in a league of his own.
Having written huge hits like Kelly Clarkson's "Already Gone," Leona Lewis' "Bleeding Love," Beyonce's "Halo" and Adele's "Rumour Has It" -- seriously, check out the full list -- he is definitely up there with full-time songwriters like Dr. Luke and Max Martin as one of the most renowned and accredited go-to men in pop music. It wouldn't be bad to have an ear like his, huh?
Simply put, Tedder is a musical genius, and as he played undiscovered protégé-level piano riffs and hit vocal runs that seemed like they came straight from the gods above and into his lungs, the crowd tuned in more and more.
OneRepublic's show had tons of different elements mixed in. Some of the flashy props and tactics the band used, like the modern screens, confetti, the shiny mirrored row of hanging cubes, the fluorescent blue microphone that descended from the ceiling for half of one song, and of course the silhouette tarp used during the intro, all seem like elements from a much larger-caliber arena show. Other points during the evening felt more like being at a Christian rock concert.
Story continues on the next page.