Crowd goes wild for PMJ Twenties 2.0

Gillian Mazur, Staff writer

On Jan. 29, the Mercyhurst Institute for Arts and Culture hosted Scott Bradlee’s Postmodern Jukebox, widely known as PMJ.
Racking up over 1 billion views on YouTube and 1 million subscribers, this band is known for converting modern pop music into older genres such as swing and jazz.
The musicians were greeted with a warm welcome from the full house at the Mary D’Angelo Performing Arts Center.
This concert, in particular, was Postmodern Jukebox’s “Welcome to The Twenties 2.0” tour and lasted for around two hours with a brief intermission.
The musicians performed over a dozen songs throughout the course of the evening.
At the concert, attendees were able to experience it all.
From renditions of classics such as Celine Dion’s “My Heart Will Go On,” to tap dances of Nintendo’s “Super Mario Bros” theme songs, they performed a variety of pieces in many different styles.
Postmodern Jukebox started right out of the gate with vocalist and emcee Michael Cunio singing Michael Jackson’s “Thriller.”
After a song or two, Cunio made sure to recognize the backbone of PMJ, the band, which consisted of Corey King (trombone), AJ Kluth (clarinet and saxophone), Tom Jorgensen (drums), Adam Kubota (bass), Mike Chisnall (guitar) and Logan Evan Thomas (piano).
Spectators watched and heard the spectacular rhythms created by tap dancer Matt Shields throughout the evening.
The audience was also blessed to hear the silken tones of vocalists David Simmons Jr., Dani Armstrong and Robyn Adele Anderson, in addition to Cunio.
While all of the songs performed by PMJ online are all incredible in their own right, the songs chosen for the Twenties 2.0 tour were perfect for the audiences’ collective age.
A few crowd favorites included renditions of Meghan Trainor’s “All About That Bass,” Taylor Swift’s “Look What You Made Me Do” and OutKast’s “Hey Ya!”
The audience also was dazzled with over a dozen outfit changes between songs.
Many of the songs performed by PMJ had to do with love and its ups and downs, such as The Chainsmokers’ “Don’t Let Me Down,” George Michael’s “Careless Whisper” and Lady Gaga’s “Bad Romance.”
Cunio said, “So thank God for music right? Because there’s nothing else in the world that can help us process the hurt and the tough times quite like a beautiful song.”
A very interactive experience, throughout different points in the evening the audience was encouraged to snap photos, clap, sing and even dance along.
Near the end of the concert, Cunio gave a bit of a history lesson by stating the parallels between the times before the 1920s to now.
“Hear me out, see the decade prior to 1920 was one marked by economic chaos, social upheaval, war, conflict. … I know, sounds familiar right? But without those events, the flourishing of great ideas, art and songs that came to define the 1920s may never have happened. So our message to you is as we collectively enter the 20s 2.0 appropriately comes from the title of the 1920 hit song, ‘Look for the Silver Lining’ because if history does repeat itself we know that the clouds of conflict, negativity, fear, that have characterized our past few years will gradually roll away and our country — right, left and center — will come together, ushering in the future doing what we do best. Dancing to hot jazz, and drinking bootleg gin, baby.”
Postmodern Jukebox finished off the concert with an encore of “What is Love” by Haddaway and asked the audience to take one big group selfie.