Josh Groban is a charming guy.
At his concert Sunday night at Sleep Train Arena, the boyishly handsome singer had the audience in the palm of his hands, wowing with his velvety vocals and entertaining with his jokes and stories.
Groban said being back in Sacramento was extra special to him, and mentioned how he got his start in Sacramento, performing as a 17-year-old at the 1998 inauguration of Gray Davis as governor of California at what was then Arco Arena. A few weeks later he went on to sub in a duet with Celine Dion for Andrea Bocelli at the 1999 Grammy Awards rehearsals, and his career skyrocketed from there.
Performing in-the-round, Groban opened with “Brave,” and continued with a crowd-pleasing set of favorites, including “February Song,” “False Alarms,” “Un Alma Mas,” and “Vincent” (aka “Starry, Starry Night”), the 1972 Don McLean tribute to Vincent van Gogh.
A powerful instrumental version of Aerosmith’s “Dream On” was a pleasant surprise.
Groban saved some of his best songs for the finale — Stevie Wonder’s “I Believe (When I Fall in Love It Will Be Forever),” “You Raise Me Up” and Charlie Chaplin’s timeless “Smile.”
Hand-picked by Groban to open was “The Voice” alum Judith Hill, a striking songstress poised for great success in the music industry. You also might remember her from the Michael Jackson documentary-concert film “This Is It” or the documentary “20 Feet from Stardom.”
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Featured photo by gosheshe/CC Flickr; Above photo by Steven Chea