Mel Parsons – Galatos: May 19, 2023 (Concert Review)

Mel Parsons opened up her Tiny Days Tour in Auckland in front of a seated audience at Galatos with a show dedicated to parents and their children.

I’ve been to a few shows at Galatos over the years and I seem to remember most of those shows as rather raucous events…Miss June, Beastwars, Wire, Wax Chattles come to mind…so seeing Mel Parsons there with tables and chairs set up was something new…at least for me.


FablesThe night’s opener was Fables (aka Jess Bailey) who I sadly missed, but 13th Floor photographer Chris Zwaagdyk didn’t. Appropriately for the theme of the evening, I met Jess and her 5-month old after the show (I believe she also has a two year old. As for her set, I have it on good authority from the couple sitting next to me that she was in fine form.

Mel Parsons

It was 9pm when Mel took the stage, initially solo, acoustic with a shout of “We love you Mel!” coming from the audience. Mel gets settled in, taking time to find a safe place for her glass of water which is precariously perched on a small platform in front of her.

Mel Parsons“Does that look like its gonna go?”

Yes it does, but no it doesn’t.

Then Anika Moa emerges from the backstage area and takes her seat. Now we can start.

“I was going to open with a song called Blame”, explains Mel, noting that it might be too depressing, she saves it for the second song and instead plays Down So Long from Drylands.

As always, Mel sounds fantastic, her deep, full voice sounds like liquid honey to these ears.

“Is it too negative if I play Blame now?”

Mel then tells us how the “mother in question” emailed her after hearing the song, asking, “Is that what you really think about me?”

Then things get a little more upbeat and a little louder as Jed Parsons and Josh Logan take to the stage…Jed on drums and Josh on fretless electric bass.

The set features a mix of tunes from throughout Mel’s career as she only has a new single, Tiny Days, to promote. She plays acoustic and electric guitar while Jed moves from drums to electric guitar…he doesn’t actually move, but plays the guitar while still seated at the drum kits, at one point, during Just Cause You Don’t Want Me, playing guitar, drums and singing all at once.

Mel ParsonsMel’s got plenty of stories to tell us between songs…including one about the time she and Jed performed two different songs at the same time accidently in from of 5000 Australian fans.

Halfway through the set we get a new song titled after which Mel tells us her 4 year old daughter’s reaction to hearing the tune around the house was…”You forgot the 1!”.

It was that kind of evening. When introducing Failure as “a song about a loser”, we hear a hearty “Yeah!” from the crowd.

The set ends with Far Away, the opening track from Drylands, an album that stands the test of time, as does Glass Heart.

In fact the encore consists of two tunes from that album, a solo acoustic What Would You Change and a full band I Got The Lonely.

The audience and artists mix and mingle post-show, signing albums and sharing stories.

And I’ll be looking forward to hearing Mel Parsons a few months from now when she takes part in the Come Together: Fleetwood Mac Rumours show in August as no one sings a Christine McVie song like Mel.

Marty Duda

Click on any image to view a photo gallery by Chris Zwaagdyk

Mel Parsons:
Mel Parsons Setlist:
  1. Down So Long
  2. Blame
  3. Slow Burn
  4. Light
  5. Alberta Sun
  6. 4.3.2.
  7. Carry On
  8. Tiny Days
  9. Don’t Wait
  10. Come Over
  11. Just ‘Cause You Don’t Want Me
  12. Failure
  13. Far Away
  14. What Would You Change
  15. I Got The Lonely

Mel Parsons – TINY DAYS TOUR

Saturday May 20 – The Piano, Christchurch
Saturday May 28 – Meow, Wellington

Tickets are available HERE