Smashing the solo act with Lewis Capaldi

Today I’ve decided to take a risk.

As you may have learned from reading my “A bite of the British life” mini-series, I’m expanding my blog a bit to include some lifestyle content. As passionate as I am about food and fitness, there are other things in my life close to my heart that I want to share with you—and that’s especially true for what you’re about to read.

When one of my college friends and fellow bloggers Alicia MacDonald (check her out at stylishlygoodvibes.blog) recommended going to a concert alone, I nearly laughed. Me? At a concert by myself? But then I thought, Well I live in New York City where anything goes… it can’t be that weird. I’ve done plenty of other social activities on my own here. 

And just like that, guess who spoiled herself with a $188 ticket to Michael Bublé at Madison Square Garden on February 20, 2019? Yes, my wallet cried, but it was a dream of mine since age 12 to see him perform. Guess what else? I went solo to a show for the fourth time this weekend.

All of those concerts were great for their own unique reasons, but I think Lewis Capaldi’s concert on Friday night meant the most. For private reasons, I thought it was going to be too overwhelming and emotional to be there. Little did I know those few hours would answer questions that had been swirling in my head for weeks. Little did I know that being surrounded by other fans would bring me peace and comfort. Little did I know how much perspective I would gain from hearing and seeing the performance of each song. And little did I know how much comic relief Lewis would provide (alright, I kind of knew that, but so would anyone who’s heard his interviews or who follows him on social media… if neither of those apply to you, watch the video below).

 

 

 Wait… so who is this guy with the funny accent?

Lewis Capaldi is a singer-songwriter from Scotland, and after selling out his shows here in the states, he’s campaigning (um, it’s legit) to become “America’s Next Sweetheart.” He may look average, but his sense of humor and voice is anything but. He’s appeared on Jimmy Fallon, Ellen, The Late Late Show with James Corden, Elvis Duran and the Morning Show (I challenge you not to laugh at this), and he’s also quickly befriended stars like Niall Horan and the Jonas Brothers, who covered his hit “Someone You Loved” in BBC Radio 1’s Live Lounge. In other words: he’s a big deal.

Lewis’ new album “Divinely Uninspired To A Hellish Extent” dropped this spring, and it’s packed with some of the most relatable lyrics I’ve ever heard in my life. Not to mention, his voice is honey-smooth with just enough flecks of rasp to accent the raw moments of each song. I think he ripped every heartstring of mine by the end of the concert.

The breakdown

The crazy thing about music is that it often expresses exactly how we feel or what we’re going through better than we ever could. Whether we don’t want to talk about our feelings, we don’t know how to put our emotions into words or whatever the case may be, there’s immeasurable, inexplicable relief in coming across music and lyrics that heal the heart, mind and soul. In no particular order, these are the songs from the concert that do just that for me.

[NOTE: I kept the clips short; check out the full setlist at the end of this post, including some of what his opening act SAINT PHNX played]

“Someone You Loved”

 

 

Before the last song, Lewis joked that he had to pee before he could come out and play this as the encore! “Someone You Loved” is the moneymaker. It’s popular around the world, topping charts everywhere for a reason.

Forever

Ooh, the first few lines could have been a deleted scene from that Luke Combs song “Hurricane.” On the other hand, this track illustrates the evergreen, painful truth that all good things must come to an end, no matter how good our intentions are to make them everlasting.

Caught me off guard, I wish that I was sober…
Under the exit lights, as beautiful as ever
I really wish that I dressed up a little better
No regrets is what we said, we can’t go back again
Darling, nobody said that it would last forever
That doesn’t mean we didn’t try to get there…
Two burning hearts are dared to break, remember
Nobody said that it would last forever

Fade

 

 

This and “Bruises” are tied for my favorite track. The explanation behind the lyrics just punches you in the gut.

It ain’t no wonder why we lose control
When we’re always a heart attack away from falling in love
Well I know that we’ve been hardly holding on
To tell the truth, I can’t believe we got this far…
Guess that I’m a fool for the way that you caught me
Girl, you make my heart break more every day
But don’t fade away

Mercy

This is actually one of his older songs. I’m drawn to one, simple line highlighting a complicated sentiment I’m all too familiar with.

Somehow I can’t let go, but I know I’ve been holding on too long

Bruises

 

 


Lewis just released an EP with four versions of this track, and I’ve nearly broken the replay button on the acoustic one. I love that he uses the metaphor of bruises, because “scars” seem so stale in the music world.

I’ve been holding onto hope
that you’ll come back when you can find some peace…

I’ve been told, I’ve been told to get you off my mind
But I hope I never lose the bruises that you left behind

Headspace

I always forget about this one because it’s the last song on the album (and hella long), but who can’t relate?

And I know your heart’s at war with your head

This show delivered on every component: the talent behind the music itself (and vocals, of course), lyrics that put Taylor Swift’s breakup anthems to shame, and just the perfect dose of special effects. I thoroughly enjoyed taking it all in. One of the best parts about going to a concert alone is that it cuts out a lot of distraction and judgment that a friend might have imposed (i.e. he/she getting bored, teasing you for not knowing all the words, that sort of thing). If you’ve felt the magic of a really great concert before, trust me… it’s that feeling multiplied by a million. Give it a try sometime!

Thanks so much for reading, and let me know what you think in the comments 🙂

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