Lizzo Tears up During ‘Special Tour’ Hometown Return to Detroit

Being back where she was born made for a particularly special night of Lizzo’s The Special Tour on Thursday (Oct. 6) in Detroit.

The Grammy Award-winning singer was born Melissa Jefferson in the Motor City during 1988, and though her family moved to Houston when she was 10 years old she continued to visit regularly and still refers to it as home. Thursday’s show before about 15,000 fans at Little Caesars Arena was her largest concert there to date, following a co-headlining slot at the Mo Pop Festival during May of 2019.

Lizzo started waving her home town flag early in the nearly two-hour concert, changing references in the opening song “The Sign” to “Detroit keeps singing along” and “my people keep singing along.”

Segueing into “2 Be Loved (Am I Ready),” Lizzo declared “tonight is a very special night ’cause we are home, bitch! My whole family is in this motherf***er!” But Lizzo saved her most extensive expression until late in the show, before closing the main set with “Good as Hell.”

“The feeling that I have,” she began, before being interrupted by a long, deafening ovation that left Lizzo near tears, “is indescribable.” She shouted out to her family, pointing around the building and adding that “my mom’s over here somewhere.” “It’s emotional being in the place where you were born,” Lizzo explained. “It’s emotional being back where your roots began…thinking about the people you wish were here.”

Then she really did tear up when nothing that, “I think about my father every time I come here. He would’ve been so proud…”

Lizzo then turned her talking to being proud of the fans who came, repeating her customary mantra, “I love you. You are Beautiful. You can do anything” before launching into the song.

The arena date was part of a two-night homecoming for Lizzo. On Wednesday night she played a special Small Stage Series show for SiriusXM at Saint Andrew’s Hall, a historic 1,000-capacity club where Lizzo would attend concerts during her Detroit visits.

The 13-song, 55-minute performance was recorded and will be broadcast the concert at 9 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 12 on SiriusXM Hits (Channel 2) and on the SXM App.

The Special Tour’s next stop is Friday at Toronto’s Scotiabank Arena. The North American leg of the tour warps up Nov. 18-19 in Inglewood, Calif., while Lizzo’s European dates begin Feb. 17 in Oslo, Norway.

Lars Brandle