Last night, I saw the amazing Birdy at The Roxy in Hollywood. Wow!
I’ve been a fan of her voice and music for a while now, but was blown away by the power of her voice. It’s not just a powerful and beautiful voice, she has amazing control over it and knows exactly how to sell each note and emotion in the song. Her covers are, in my opinion, far more superior than the originals. And I can say that because she doesn’t just cover songs – she reinterprets them, in a beautiful yet haunting way. It’s amazing. And she’s only 16!
She started with “Shelter”, one of my favorite songs from her, and the sold out venue was silent. It was absolutely magical.
From the moment the curtain went up, to the end of her second song, there was not a single peep from the audience. Now I’ve been to several shows in the past few years, and I’ve only once experienced that complete and utter silence from the crowd – and that was when Adele played at Hotel Cafe in 2008. The crowd was completely mesmerized and hanging onto every word and emotion. Again, I’ve seen many shows, and even seen Adele several times, and I’ve only experienced that complete and utter captivating feeling once before last night.
Aside from the magical trance we we under for the first two songs, another highlight for me was her cover of “People Help The People”. I can’t get enough of that song – it’s so emotional. I’m moved each and every time I hear it.
The whole show was amazing. Another moment I fondly remember is the live version of “White Winter Hymnal”, which started off with full band accompaniment, but ending with just Birdy and one member from her band, a cappella. An incredible ending. The song is so melodic and multi-layered, and it was great to hear it build, and come back down. It was an amazing and fantastic ending to the song.
She also played non-album tracks, “Just A Game” from the Hunger Games soundtrack, and “Learn Me Right” which is on the Brave soundtrack with Mumford and Sons. Noticeably absent was her cover of Ed Sheeran’s “The A-Team”.
The encore included the crowd favorite Bon Iver cover, “Skinny Love”, and the James Taylor classic, “Fire and Rain”.
Overall, the night was amazing. I slightly wish she played more acoustic tracks and didn’t have a full band. While the band worked, she really didn’t need it. I prefer acoustic singer-songwriters, and Birdy definitely has the voice and talent to do without the full band. Having said that, the night was amazing and I hope to see more of Birdy in the US.
If you missed the show in LA last night, or the one in NY tomorrow, fear not – Birdy just released a new live EP, recorded in April at the Tabernacle in London. It’s great! Maybe not as amazing as seeing her in person, but it’s pretty darn close. Until she plays in LA again, it’ll do.