‘New Year’s Rockin’ Eve’: Talking Justin Bieber, Taylor Swift, more performances

New Year's Rockin' EveAre you ready for some fun on New Year’s Eve? Let’s hope so, since “Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest” is bringing more to the table this year than just a really long title: it is also airing a number of memorable performances along with a countdown of some of the most-popular artists that Clark helped to launch on “American Bandstand” so many years ago.

Before we start into some individual performance reviews, can we start by giving Fergie a huge amount of love as the official host for the Los Angeles portion of the show? Even though she tries a little too hard at times, she brings so much energy and fun to the show that it almost makes us want to call her up and offer her the job as judge on “The X Factor” next season without even Simon Cowell’s approval.

The performances

Flo Rida – We’ll admit that we’ve never found Mr. Florida to be the greatest live performer of all time, but he’s a trier and we love him for that. He commands the stage very well, and he does a great job of getting people in the audience to dance as ridiculously as humanly possible.

Neon Trees – This is something we feel kind of bad about. Why book a band when the vast majority of the audience still has little idea who they are? New York must be a tough (and very cold) crowd, as the band tried everything to get some of these people on their feet and dancing. Instead, most of them just sat there wondering what was going on around them.

Jason Aldean – This is how to put on a country performance! Jason is completely seasoned on stage, and with the benefit of an energetic Los Angeles crowd, his set came off much better than that of Neon Trees. (This is what warm weather does for people.)

Ellie Goulding – Now this is how you have a proper performance on New Year’s Eve! This is not a time to show off a new song, so Ellie kept things very nostalgic and performed “Lights” … a song that was ironically first created before 2012 even started. Nonetheless, it was still great to listen to.

Justin Bieber – Meanwhile, Bieber did something very smart here in performing a hit from this year in “Boyfriend,” but doing an acoustic version to help promote his upcoming “Believe” acoustic CD coming out early next year.

Carly Rae Jepsen – This performance is a reminder of just how different it is performing in New York City than Los Angeles right now. Carly looked freezing the entirety of this performance, and really took her a minute or two to get into a song that she’ll be doing the rest of her life in “Call Me Maybe.” She then flubbed the start of “This Kiss,” but at least you can’t accuse her of lip-syncing.

The Wanted – The band performed of course their hit “Glad You Came.”

Psy – The Korean pop star of course did “Gangnam Style,” and he got back together with MC Hammer for the first time since the AMAs. It was fun, but nothing we have not seen already.

Pitbull – It doesn’t really matter what Pitbull sings anymore; we just love to watch him dance around the stage.

Taylor Swift – Taylor closed things off with an electric set of some new hits from “Red,” and out of everyone performing in New York, you have to give her a round of applause. She sounded great, and even kept her energy level up.

What performance of the night was your favorite? If you want to go behind the scenes of this year’s show with Ryan Seacrest, you can do so over here.

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