A sunny walk through Finnieston towards the Hydro, we see a crowd walking towards the show after waiting 20 years to see the Australian Rock band CrowRead More
Warming up the audience for a sold-out James Bay gig in Glasgow at a stunning venue ‘City Halls & The Old Fruitmarket’ was a young American talent Kevin Garrett who had a lovely tone to his voice. A few songs to check out ‘Lonely Like Me’ and ‘Coloring’.
Kevin tells the audience he has written songs for other artists in specific Beyonce and sung one of the songs ‘Pray you catch me’. That he wrote for her. Kevin finished his set with a haunting version of ‘When The Party’s Over’ by Billie Eilish which went down great with the audience along with the rest of his set, Kevin did a fantastic job.
James took to the stage with the audience going wild for him to appear. His first of many renditions of his songs was ‘Best Fake Smile’ which kicked off with a steady drum beat and flashy lights leaving seconds between the flashes of seeing James in full light. James slowed the next song down with ‘Give Me A Reason’ followed quickly by ‘If You Ever Want to Be in Love’ breaking away from the microphone at times to perform to the audience with the guitar. Throughout the whole gig there was several guitar changes showing that the songs aren’t built around one instrument.
James talks to the audience about lockdown and mentions how it’s so nice to be in a room ‘Like this’ he then went on to say these last couple of years has done all sorts to us and he’s very grateful to be back on stage and to have a full band on tour with him.
James also goes on to talk about how he’s met so many people around the world and been able to go to many different places and along the way he met friends and made a good friend a long time ago, one of whom was Kevin Garett. James went on to say it was ‘Incredibly special that tonight and throughout the tour he’s opening up the show.’ And then asked the audience to make some noise for him, which they did cheering and applauding.
James then mentions another friend, Julia Michaels who he wrote and released the single in 2019 ‘Peer Pressure’ another roar of cheering and applauding came from the audience before James carried on singing the song followed straight on by ‘Let It Go’ where there were lights shining from mobile phones and the audience singing the song back to James.
At the end of this song James referred to lockdown, he wanted to tell the audience what he’s been doing during the two years and goes onto mention that ‘We had a baby’ the audience scream and cheer whilst they are still in the moment he says, ‘It was a highlight, a good moment.
It was the greatest thing in the world but absolutely terrifying at the same time’. James is speaking directly to those in the audience who have had a baby or more than one and says ‘You will understand when he says his baby is the most beautiful in the world’ the audience show support yet again by cheering and clapping. James continues to say, ‘It’s what we do and trust me it hits you, it’s very real.’
And he tells everyone his baby’s name is Ada and then refers to himself and the other most important lady in his life Lucy the audience scream and cheer he asks the audience to stay with him on this one and then goes on to talk about their experience of finding what they thought at the time could have been their forever home, ‘it was a good moment’ he said. They went to view the house but didn’t end up getting it, they lost out. James proceeds to show the audience as well as tell them how in the moment he was stamping his feet and upset but from this experience it made him think and he turned to his side and looking he realised that maybe this person is all he really needs.
The audience cheered. James explained that this lyric came to his mind ‘I’ve only got one life and I want you in it’. And went on to tell the audience that it’s going to be on his next album, and it’ll be out this Friday 13/05/2022 as a single. There was a lot of screaming and cheering from the audience and James continued to play the song ‘One Life’.
A highlight for me was seeing the moment during James’s singing ‘Craving’ where he shows his talent amongst singing, he is an incredible musician, the song has points in it where he chucked guitar picks into the audience and had them clapping and dancing by the end of the song James says ‘Glasgow, It’s been a couple of years, got to let me indulge in myself a bit’.
As the show comes to an end James drops the announcement that his album will be released in July and introduces the band whilst continuing to play the guitar leading into the song ‘Pink Lemonade’.
James leaves the stage and the audience patiently wait for him to come back on for an encore, he returns on stage and talks about going through a lot even pre pandemic 2019 he had a lot of anxiety, he felt lost and wrote 150 thousand sad songs and kept about two. The next song he sung he felt hope and joy in it, and it’s called ‘Everybody Needs Someone’. James finishes his set with his incredible ‘Hold Back the River’ where the audience had hands in the air, singing the words, dancing and jumping full of enjoyment.
It was a sensational moment seeing James live and what a performance he gives. James takes the time during the show to set the scene for each song giving a background to the audience. A great selection of songs although so many unfortunately not on the set list but this tour was based around the new album which is very exciting. The music was very loud, but the audience was potentially louder, there was a great age range from 14-year-olds – 60+ year olds with abled bodies and disabled. You think James is good via internet, just wait till you see him live.
Review and Photography by Laura Somerville.
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