"American Idol" season eight champ Kris Allen's surprise concert Sunday afternoon on the Santa Monica Pier was shut down by the police due to a lack of a permit, according to eyewitness footage posted on YouTube. Watch:
Allen's impromptu decision to promote his forthcoming CD, Thank You Camellia, due May 22, was first announced via Twitter with scant details: "Who wants to go the beach and watch some guy play some tunes? Hear he's ok."
Allen then got more specific with a follow up tweet: 'How bout the pier in Santa Monica? 8 pm. You...me...couple tunes...ocean breeze...birds pooping on us. It's gonna be great."
Fans were treated to vintage Allen -- just the charismatic singer and his guitar, firing off original material, 'Better Than You," 'Live Like We're Dying" and the new single 'Vision of Love." For good measure, Allen threw in requested cover songs by Coolio, Donny Hathaway, Justin Timberlake and a mash-up of songs by Rihanna ('We Found Love"), Katy Perry ('Firework") and Lady Gaga ('Just Dance").
As he continued to perform and word spread that the 'guy who won American Idol" was busking on the boardwalk (his show was even livestreamed on the Internet by a fan), Allen attracted unwanted attention by a pier police officer. The polo shirt-wearing officer gave Allen the proverbial hook in the middle of his new ballad, "Should I."
On the bright side, there were no arrests. Humorously, #FreeKrisAllen became a trending topic on the Internet, with Allen's own mom tweeting: "Dear Pier Cops, Don't make me come over there! #RathofMom #freekrisallen"
Allen later graciously tweeted: 'Well I wasn't expecting anything from tonight but that's not what I expected. Getting stopped by the cops never crossed my mind. Thanks to everyone that came out. Had a good time. And to the people that just stopped... thanks for stopping. Btw I didn't mean any disrespect to other street performers out there. I respect them so much for what they do."