Robyn's Honey Tour: This Timeline Will Make You Feel Like You Were There

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Robyn dancing on her own. (Jason Perez)

Nine (very long!) years after her last solo tour, Robyn is back in the Bay Area to play two sold-out shows at Oakland's Fox Theater. Here's a play-by-play of what the opening night was like.

6:30 pm: On the BART ride over, you think about how you almost didn't make it, thanks to Sun Country (the Fyre Festival of airlines) delaying your flight numerous times earlier in the day. But you never worried too much. The universe wouldn't let you stand up Robyn.

6:35 pm: You also think about the first time you saw Robyn in concert. It was 2008 at Bimbo's in North Beach. You were front row, right under Robyn's nostrils, because the fanbase was much smaller back then. Fast forward to 2019, when Robyn sells out a huge venue so quickly, she is forced to add a second night to accommodate her adoring public.

6:45 pm: That's not the only thing that's changed since 2008. In a full-circle moment, your Bimbo's date is also your date tonight. Back then, both of you were basically babies. Now, you find your friend breastfeeding her own baby in the backseat of her car, which you promptly christen The Lactation Mobile™.

6:48 pm: Her husband zooms off with the little one because mommy and her friend have some serious dancing to do.


7 - 8 pm: Redacted conversations about starting a cult, work-life balance and strippers named Billy and Silk.

8:25 pm: In the security line, you start to get nervous about something you're trying to smuggle in. No, nothing illicit. That's more of a 2008 move. This time, it's all about mini pickles and salted almonds. Hey, don't knock it 'til you've tried it! Sometimes, you need a bit of protein and sodium mid booty bounce!

8:35 pm: You celebrate successfully sneaking your snacks in, as well as finding a view unobstructed by tall people. You realize you are that tall person for someone else. You slouch a little as penance.

9:10 pm: The stage glows to reveal what heaven would look like if a Swedish person designed it. Gossamer pieces of white organza float over a minimal and serene scene, which includes a random sculpture of two hands holding a foot (or maybe it's a piece of bleached coral to raise awareness around rising sea temperatures?). Hard to say, but there's no time to figure it out because the music is starting!

9:11 pm: A sparkly chime and throbbing synth introduce the night's first song, "Send to Robyn Immediately." You think it's an odd kick-off choice, but has Robyn ever led you astray? Never once! She knows best. You decide to just enjoy the ride.

9:12 pm: Robyn's disembodied voice pleads with you, "Baby forgive me...." as if apologizing for taking such a long hiatus between albums. Based on how everyone in the room instantly transforms into screaming Beatles fans circa 1964, the consensus is that all is forgiven, and then some.

9:14 pm: Halfway through the song, Robyn is still not on stage. You ask your friend, "What if she never comes out and just sings from backstage for two hours?" You both decide she would be able to get away with something like that.

9:15 pm: Finally, there's movement in Swedish Heaven! Robyn walks to the center of the stage and stands there for a long time, silent, allowing us to bask in her silhouette. She is the epitome of extra and you wouldn't have her any other way.

9:16 pm: The spotlight hits Robyn to reveal a Fembot-esque look—silver knee-high boots and a matching dress with dark sequined nipples. #FreeTheNipple! #Nipplegate2019! #JusticeForJanet!

9:17 pm: Everything takes a golden hue and Robyn instructs, "Baby, I have what you want. Come get your honey." Your feelings are best expressed via these visuals of Winnie the Pooh sticking his entire head inside a honey pot.

9:19 pm: Robyn's voice sounds as clear as it did back in the '90s. You think about how your love for her music has outlasted so many other loves in your life. You feel grateful.

9:22 pm: It's time to travel back in time to 2010 with Body Talk one-two punch "Indestructible" and "Hang With Me." The crowd is starting to get their groove on. Someone accidentally steps on you. Another person spills something on your shoe. But it's impossible to get mad with this much love in the air. It's like we're all in a polyamorous relationship with Robyn. We share her and never get jealous.

9:34 pm: Time for more time-travel! This time, we skip forward to 2020 with "Beach2k20," a song that you initially hated because it reminded you of the video game music that plays while you're selecting a Mario Kart character (#YoshiOrPeachForTheWin!). But you've grown to love living inside the song's spare, after-hours samba fantasy.

9:39 pm: While it took some time for "Beach2k20" to grow on you, "Ever Again" spread like that rash you got from a hostel in Prague that one time. Everyone shouts "Never gonna be brokenhearted! Ever again!" with the knowledge that the incantation will probably not hold true, but in this moment, you're willing it to be true and that's enough.

9:46 pm: You notice that a lot of people around you don't know the words to "Be Mine!" off of Robyn's 2005 self-titled album. So maybe that's why they didn't let out a huge gasp when Robyn yanked down a hanging piece of fabric while singing, "You had your arm around what's-her-name. She had on that scarf I gave you!"

9:53 pm: Robyn disappears and a gorgeous male dancer takes her place, contorting, gliding, back-bending all over the stage. You and pretty much everyone else appreciates it because you all are either artsy or gay or both.

09:58 pm: You remember your cup full of smuggled mini pickles and almonds! You and your friend proceed to gobble them all up.

10:01 pm: Robyn returns wearing a black lace number with a large bow in her hair, its ribbon ends falling down her back. The power that this accessory has cannot be overstated. More and more, it seems as though Robyn has one singular mission with this tour and everything else she's ever done and ever will do:

10:08 pm: Some fans have had trouble falling in love with the less anthemic, more chilled out side of Honey. But one look at how much fun Robyn has performing songs like "Because It's In The Music" and "Between the Lines" is enough to get everyone on board.

10:13 pm: Your friend leans over and says, "I don't do drugs, but Robyn makes me want to start."

10:14 pm: You lean over and say, "It's like we're all individual brain cells in Robyn's mind after she's taken a hit of molly."

10:15 pm: Continuing the trend of stoner thoughts, you plead the case that Robyn's method approach to performances makes her the Daniel Day-Lewis of pop music. Your friend goes along with your theory because she's kind.

10:24 pm: During non-album track "Love Is Free," Robyn holds her hands over the crowd as if she's a rave priestess compelling us all to exorcise our demons through manic dancing. We obey.

10:31 pm: The moment everyone has been waiting for arrives! It's time to dance on our own! You're in a happy relationship, but tap into your lonely, yet self-sufficient past self.

10:33 pm: After one verse, Robyn pauses, as if to give us space to consider all we've been through since we first fell in love with this song and to marvel at how much we've all grown.

10:34 pm: You and the others fill the silence by singing the pained chorus: I'm in the corner, watching you kiss her, ohhhhh! I'm right over here, why can't you see me, ohhhhh! It's a magical moment and you fight back tears because you're already the dude holding a cup of mini pickles; you don't want to be the crying dude holding a cup of mini pickles.

10:36 pm: You barely catch your breath before Robyn wallops you with another banger, "Missing U." And just when you think things can't get any more euphoric, Robyn throws "Call Your Girlfriend" in your face. You think back to the time you pulled your back out while attempting the choreography from the music video, unofficially entering the Guinness Book of World Records for Gayest Injury Ever. You wonder if Robyn is going to pull out those dance moves tonight.


10:43 pm: There is so much love floating around, it feels like the entire theater is inside a Care Bear Stare.

10:44 pm: You can tell Robyn feels it too when she flashes heart hands during "With Every Heartbeat." You felt cheesy when you did this at that Taylor Swift concert, but there is zero shame here.

10:45 pm: You think of the time you described Robyn's music as "a scab falling off." You still believe it.

10:46 pm: Polka-dot-covered balloons appear out of nowhere because Robyn is trying to drown you to death with flood after flood of endorphins.

10:47 pm: You and your friend make a pact to be each other's dates to every Robyn concert from now until the end of time. You imagine this will be one of the easiest promises to keep.

10:48 pm: During the final song of the night—a cover of Kindness' "Who Do You Love?"—Robyn asks, "Who do you love, Oakland?" The answer is obvious.

10:49 pm: You think about how you've loved this woman and her art since the '90s and how some loves are forever. Robyn is that person you can't remember not knowing, the one you might not always be in touch with, but can fall back in a groove with like no time has passed. That anchoring kind of love.

10:50 pm: You realize that, when you share these thoughts in a blog post tomorrow, people will mistakenly believe that you were on something. The reality is less scandalous:

10:59 pm: On your way out of the theater, you consider buying some merch, but decide the memory is enough. You think to yourself, Until next time, Robyn! and start making your way back home. Everything is wonderful and nothing hurts.

Honey Tour Set List

"Send to Robyn Immediately"
"Hang With Me"
"Ever Again"
"Be Mine!"
"Because It’s In The Music"
"Between the Lines"
"Love Is Free"
"Dancing on My Own"
"Missing U"
"Call Your Girlfriend"



"Human Being"
"With Every Heartbeat"
"Who Do You Love?"