Saturday night was filled with concerts downtown Minneapolis. We headed for the State Theatre to cover James Bay. The young British singer had to reschedule his show from August and also move from the Varsity to the larger venue.
English singer Frances opened the evening. She just had released her debut EP “Let It Out” and this was the last show of her first US tour. The setup was quite simple: Fances and a keyboard, the music was certainly not. Her songs are soulful and her lyrics are quite interesting. Her 2nd songs was a Justin Bieber cover greeted with cheers by the audience. In “The last word” she sang about breakups and told the story of a woman at a previous show, who started crying in the front row before she even started. By the end of her set, she the crowd was entranced and cheering for her.
James Bay took to the stage with “Collide” and had the audience in his grasp from the first cords. Mostly female, but with a surprising number of guys (not sure if they came willingly) the crowd sang along pretty much through the show. He encouraged his fans to get out of their seats. The set featured many songs from his new album “Chaos and the Calm”
Bay’s skill as a guitar player is evident in his solos. It is also impressive to watch him change from upbeat songs to slower ballads like “Scars” and take the crowd with him to a different energy level. Overall this was a great show giving his fans what they came to see. Judging by audience reaction and the length of the merch booth line, we will be seeing James Bay back at even bigger venues.
Set List: (Pending confirmation)
When We Were on Fire
If You Ever Want to Be in Love
Need the Sun to Break
Let It Go
Best Fake Smile
Get Out While You Can
Proud Mary (Tina Turner cover)
Hold Back the River