Gwen Stefani Returns to Anaheim to Celebrate Honda Center's 30th

Gwen Stefani returned to her hometown of Anaheim, California, to headline a special show celebrating the Honda Center's 30th anniversary. To make things extra special she played a popular No Doubt song she'd never sung solo before.

The Honda Center is an indoor arena 3 1/2 miles from Disneyland and home to the NHL Ducks. Over the years it has been the host to over 300 concerts.

It wouldn't be bananas to say Gwen has been around that track more than a few times: she has performed there more than any other female artist.

Saturday's headlining gig (9/9) was the 9th time Stefani has graced its stage. One of those times was captured for the 1997 No Doubt live VHS tape, Live in The Tragic Kingdom (which is now on DVD via their Boom Box box set).

Formerly the Arrowhead Pond, the Honda Center has hosted concerts by AC/DC, Bob Dylan, Tom Petty, CSN&Y, BTS, the Eagles and hundreds of others.

Saturday night Gwen played the longest set she's done all year, 24 songs, ten of which were No Doubt songs. The show began with "Sweet Escape," the title track from her second solo album,

A little "Sweet Escape" to kick off the 24-song set.

and then reeled off five songs from her No Doubt days.

Days that we hope are not over, but it feels that if there was to be a reunion, what a better event to have one in than in one of the major Orange County music venues, to celebrate its existence?

Gwen seemed to have doubled down on her independence this summer when she released "True Babe," a tune that came to her unfinished which she then personalized to include bits about her relationship with her husband Blake Shelton, who she does seem still very much in love with

I wanna fly to your shows
Wanna wake up in your clothes
Come get you tipsy at 6:30
Wanna take tonight slow.

"True Babe"

"True Babe" led into "Simple Kind of Life," the No Doubt song where the subject years to be a wife and mother -- a dream the singer and co-star of "The Voice" has realized.

Before going into "Excuse Me Mr.," Gwen rolled off a variety of stores and restaurants in Anaheim that are dear to her heart.

β€œYou are my community, you are my people," Stefani, who is technically from nearby Fullerton told the cheering crowd of about 19,000.

β€œI am so grateful for every single person who listened to my music all these years,” she said. According to the OC Register, in attendance were: her mother and father, Dennis and Patti Stefani; her younger brother, Todd Stefani; and sister-in-law, Jennifer.

Gwen continued by saying that typically she wouldn't sing "Excuse Me Mr." because, "I've got over it. But I wanted to bring it out for you guys."

According to our database, this is the first time as a solo artist that she has performed the song off the Tragic Kingdom album. Indeed, the same breakthrough album that came out after she and ND bassist Tony Kanal ended their romance.

Gwen returned to the stage to do Hollaback Girl as the encore.

Gwen ended the set with three No Doubt songs, "Don't Speak," "Just A Girl," and "Spiderwebs."

For her encore she dipped back into her ever-growing solo catalogue and sung about everyone's favorite source of potassium.

The 53-year-old singer who celebrates a birthday next month has performed less than a dozen times this year, but she does have one more concert booked on her calendar.

On November 4, she is playing at the Thunder Valley Casino Resort outside of Sacramento, CA. Tickets available on her website.

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Last updated: 25 Sep 2023, 05:33 Etc/UTC