Saturday, April 11, 2015

Concert Review: George Ezra - Guest Post by Tiffany Mankins

When I first heard that George Ezra was coming to Salt Lake, I had plans to go. I love George--his deep baritone voice, his storytelling lyrics, and his humor in his interviews. I was unable to attend the show, but luckily, my friend Tiffany went and agreed to write a review for me. I met Tiffany through the band A Silent Film. We were by each other at one of their shows, and then saw each other again at a Royal Teeth and American Authors concert. We have kept in touch and meet up at as many shows as we can. I'm so glad Tiffany agreed to write this post for me - it was almost like I was there seeing George myself! You can find Tiffany on Twitter @tiffmankins.

 The Concert You Won't Forget
Guest Post by Tiffany Mankins
On the morning of Friday, April 3, 2015 I woke up to a beautiful spring day. My 1st thought upon waking was that today was the day of the George Ezra concert, and a big smile crept across my face. Hours later, while I was queued outside of The Depot waiting to get into the venue for the show, I remembered when I first discovered George Ezra--it was in November of last year on a British music site. First off, I was absolutely amazed by how huge he was in Europe and was not as well known yet in America. Second, I was astounded by how this very strong, deep, and soulful voice came out of this skinny 21-year-old British “kid.” Overall, I was very moved by his music, lyrics, and voice, and was very excited for his album, Wanted On A Voyage, to be released in America. I was even more excited when he announced a tour date in Salt Lake City! I quickly bought my ticket at The Depot box office when tickets went on sale and then counted down the days till the show.
When inside of The Depot, I quickly ran up to the last remaining spot against the right side of the barricade that faced the left side of the stage. I had a big grin on my face as I knew I had grabbed a great spot for the show. I was in the middle of crowd of very young, mostly tween and teen fans, and I knew soon they would erupt in a sea of screams and tears. It reminded me that despite how talented George is, he is also considered a universal "hottie" by many female fans--which I don’t disagree with but, I had to be ready for any craziness the crowd would dish out.

The opening act was a group called Ruen Brothers. They were a bunch of very cute English lads. I had only heard a couple of their songs before the show so their music was still very new to me. Their set started off slow but had a nice build to it. Their songs reminded me a bit of traditional English folk songs mixed with a Bruce Springsteen and Elvis. The lead singer, Henry Standsall, had a very unique and amazing voice. The two stand out songs of their set were "Aces" and "Summer Sun." Overall, I was highly impressed with their live performance and their music. They are definitely a band I would like to see live again and a band I would recommend checking out.

Then the lights went down and some silly English children’s song about food played, and I knew George was about to come out. As expected, the crowd screamed loudly and every phone was out as he walked on stage. He had a huge grin on his face and started his set with "Cassie O." His set consisted of his songs "Budapest," "Listen To The Man," "Breakaway." "Barcelona," "Stand By Your Gun," "Spectacular Revival," "Over The Creek," "Benjamin Twine," "Blame It On Me," his “one man gospel choir version” of ‘"Leaving It Up To You," and an encore song of "Blind Man From Amsterdam." Ezra is such a wonderful performer to watch, from his cute little sway while he plays guitar to his very serene expressions that he has while he sings and plays to his playful stage banter. Throughout his whole set, I danced, sang, and smiled brightly, despite having to try and ignore many young female fans constantly yelling and being quite rude during the live show. I personally think his voice shines even more in the live versions of his songs. His voice really stands out on the hauntingly beautiful opening to "Did You Hear The Rain." That song live gave me goosebumps it was so good and was the perfect ending song to the show.
After the show ended there was quite the crowd waiting to meet George outside of the venue, so I decided to wait. I first met Henry Standsall from Ruen Brothers. He was very lovely to meet and talk to. I found out he is from London and his main influences for songwriting are Roy Orbison, Elvis and Quentin Tarantino films. Then a little while later, George came out. To quote one of his lyrics because it fits very well, “We met with awkward hearts.” It was the usually meeting someone you admire. You try to act as cool as you can but, end up acting pretty awkward in the process. Luckily, for me and other fans, George was pretty awkward himself. Although, he was very handsome and charming as well. I very much enjoyed meeting and talking with him and there were many smiles all around. The whole concert and night became a wonderful adventure and had ended nicely. My last thought of the night was my favorite George Ezra lyric, “When this adventure ends, your next one will begin.”