Pink Smashes Records And Wins My Heart With Truly Stunning Target Field Performance


Photos by Laura Buhman

To say things were nutty when driving downtown to Target Field for the Pink show on Thursday night would be an understatement. Honestly, I haven’t seen downtown that bustling since pre-covid and it made my heart so full but raised my blood pressure to new heights trying to get to the show on time. Thankfully, I made it.

I got into the gorgeous stadium just in time to catch the end of DJ Kid Cut Up’s DJ set that got the night started off right. DJ Kid Cut Up is not a new name to me. I’ve seen him a couple of times with Pink and he always knows just what to play to get the audience going. Although I only caught the very end of his set, I heard everything from Journey to Outkast and even “Hey Mickey” from Toni Basil. It was an eclectic mix for sure but the way that DJ Kid Cut Up put it all together was genius. I feel bad for anyone that was still stuck in traffic or in the long security lines and ended up missing his set but I highly suggest you check out some of his mixes when you’re in need of a bit of a dance break of sorts.

Before the sun had even started setting, Grouplove took the stage. I feel like Grouplove is one of those bands that is easy to hate on but, when one of their songs comes on, you best believe you are singing and dancing along. They brought that positivity and catchiness to the massive stage and truly filled the space while the audience was still streaming in. Although it was definitely early (or at least felt early due to the bright skies that were still prevalent at the 6:45 start time), Grouplove did their best to continue raising the energy bar that DJ Kid Cut Up had set. Unfortunately, I feel like their set just didn’t hook many people like we did me. Maybe it’s my love/hate relationship with this band but they had me hook line and sinker while the majority of the audience seemed to be more concerned about getting a drink or their snacks.

After another quick set from DJ Kid Cut Up, it was time for the one and only Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo. These names felt like a bit of a wild card when it came to the youthful line-up of the night but, for me, being able to see such legends on stage was a dream come true. I mean, come on, it’s Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo. You know the songs, you know the vibe, and both of those things are absolutely timeless and classic. At 70 years old, Pat Benatar looked and sounded absolutely stunning. It was as if, although she has aged, she has aged gracefully and on her own terms. The same could be said for her partner in crime and husband, Neil Giraldo. At 67 years old, it was clear that like Pat, he still has it as he wailed on the guitar with a sense of passion and fire that I only wish I got every night I was at a show.

Pat and Neil somehow condensed Pat’s epic eleven album career into an all too short nine song set but it was worth every second. There were many stand-out moments throughout their set where all members of the band shined but it was the very barebones intro of “We Belong” (written by Eric Lowen and Dave Navarro but recorded by Pat Benatar back in 1984) that truly moved me. With Pat sitting next to the piano being played by Neil, there was just something so beautiful and touching about the performance. Sure, maybe not exactly what I wanted when trying to get amped up for what was to come but, no need to fear, after the soft intro, the band kicked back in and took this song back into the high-energy vibe that had reigned supreme throughout the previous tracks. Although I wanted so much more from these legends, I feel like they absolutely utilized their short time on stage well and proved to the packed audience that, although so many years have passed, they still have it and continue to put it all out there for the world to see and hear.

There was another quick set from DJ Kid Cut Up after Pat & Neil’s set but the audience didn’t need it. Don’t get me wrong, it was fun to sing along to some songs between the sets and I absolutely loved the nod to local rap superstar Atmosphere but this crowd was clearly amped and ready to go as they should be. If you’ve never seen Pink perform live, it is truly a sight to see and show to experience. Thursday night was my twelfth or thirteenth time experiencing it but it was like the first time all over again. I was captivated the second she took over the stage in a way that only she could.

Pink didn’t just take the stage– she literally bungee jumped out of a stage prop that was hanging from the top of the stage and continued to split her time between the air and stage throughout the opening track. It didn’t stop there. Throughout Pink’s performance, she took to the air multiple times while never missing a single note. Although I know that a lot of choreography and planning went into this show, there was something so organic feeling about every moment that I absolutely adored.

The balance between the over-the-top production value and poppy songs and then the more tender, heartfelt songs was absolutely perfect. We saw every side of Pink possible on Thursday night and every side was done so flawlessly with an undeniable sense of fire and passion that literally had me moved to tears within the first song. We didn’t just see the separate sides of Pink, we saw the separate sides of her dancers and band in the same way and, as suspected, it was all just perfect.

I’m not a confident person. There I said it and, if you know me, you know this to be true. But listening and seeing certain people help change that a little bit and Pink is one of those people. She made me feel like it was okay to be a little freaky and a bit edgy and hard but still have a sensitive side at a really young age. I remember listening to her ‘Missundaztood’ album on repeat for a solid year just really falling in love with both the music and the performer behind the music. Years have passed but, to this day, if I’m feeling down, I’ll put that album on and let it take me over. Hearing a couple of songs from that album was really just the icing on the cake for me when it came to the show on Thursday night.

As a concertgoer, I was enamored by the performance on Thursday night. As a writer, it made me stressed. I only say that because by the second song, I had already hit well over one thousand words on this review which is where I typically try to keep these at. I could go on and about all of the amazing moments throughout the show but how do you ever put a show like this into words? Talent, dancers, fireworks, streamers, stunning songs, passion, fire, visuals that will be burned into my brain for years, power– I mean, come on, this was an impossible show to write up.

Beyond the show, I would be remiss if I didn’t bring up the numbers. Pink was not only the first female entertainer to headline at the beautiful Target Field, but she smashed the attendance record that was previously held by Kenny Chesney and Jason Aldean. I mean, come on, can we talk about that for a second and how monumental that is?!

Beyonce is great and I will never deny the power of Taylor Swift but Pink is my pop princess, my idol.