Maroon 5 is ready for the New Year
If there was any doubt Maroon 5 has made playing Las Vegas on New Years Eve a tradition, its scheduled two-concert sayonara to 2016 erases it. The L.A.-based band both creates the ultimate “Auld Lang Syne” event for its fans and gets to invite its own entourage of friends to party with them during and after the show. Frontman Adam Levine and his bandmates will need the stress relief after a year of mostly being on the road, touring through Mexico and South America and spending a summer month in Europe before heading back to the States where they would have a new top 10 hit by the end of the year with “Don’t Wanna Know.”
Maroon 5 added the song to its set list at a Sept. 3 show in San Antonio and began performing it during encores that ended with a cover of Prince’s “Let’s Go Crazy.” Although rapper Kendrick Lamar would add his signature lyrical dexterity to the “Don’t Wanna Know” single and a show-closing performance at the American Music Awards, the band would have to perform it without him on tour and during appearances on The Voice and Ellen, as well as in a video that found M5 dressed as Pokémon characters on the lam from mobile-app addicts.
No problem for an act that Billboard included in its list of the top 100 artists of all time. The tropical-sounding track masterminded by hitmaker Benny Blanco was released Oct. 11 and quickly became Twitter’s most tweeted-about single, with the video premiering on the Today show three days later. The video depicts Levine delivering his familiar falsetto while dressed as a turtle, and crossing paths with Ed Helms and Vince Vaughn while lamenting his lost love Sarah Silverman. It’s the band’s second collaboration with Wedding Crashers director David Dobkin, who had previously worked with the band on the video for “Sugar.”
While the video demonstrates that Levine, guitarists Jesse Carmichael and James Valentine, bassist Mickey Madden, drummer Matt Flynn and keyboardist PJ Morton have a sense of humor about themselves, a mini-documentary of the 2016 Brazilian tour dates produced by Live Nation TV and Vice gives backstage glimpses of the band. Levine and Valentine rehearse “Girl From Ipanema” before a concert during which Levine sings a verse of the bossa nova classic in Portuguese, drawing an ecstatic response from the audience.
The year also found Carmichael releasing an EP with his side project Circuit Jerks and Valentine being honored with a signature model guitar by Ernie Ball. Maroon 5 will be back on the road in February and March, but recording a new album in 2017 is a priority. Valentine described their next song cycle to ABC Radio as likely to have a little darker, more stripped-down sound, but fans can expect the band to hold off on getting moody until after the New Years Eve concerts. Last year David Copperfield came to the after party, and even if the illusionist has his own plans this year the band has every intention of delivering two nights of musical magic.
Mandalay Bay, 8 p.m. Dec. 30-31, $99.50-$250 plus tax and fee. 800.745.3000 Ticketmaster