Last night I had the priviledge of seeing Sarah Blasko at the Barbican. And what an amazing gig that was!
Sarah Blasko holds a very special place in my musical heart for a number of reasons. The first and obvious one is that she is just such an incredible singer songwriter. Her gorgeous velvety voice can serenade and haunt you. I have an ex-boyfriend who used to say to me (after I forced him to attend one of her gigs) that she taught him how to have emotions.
As a performer she is one of the most interesting and engaging people to see on stage. This is a woman whose dress sense is just so adorable and suited to her personality (what we audience members know/see of it) and who is so energetic on stage. I wouldn’t say she dances, although technically that is what it is, rather I would say she is a performer who sings with her body. She really gets lost in the music and lets it absorb her completely and it’s a thrill to watch someone perform songs so passionately.
The other reasons she is so special to me are far more is far more personal. When I was just starting out at uni, at that stage an aspiring journalist, SB was the first person I ever wrote a feature article about. Sure I’d done some news stories and some album reviews and I’d interviewed people before but she was my first published front page feature of the street press magazine I was involved with. She was an absolute pleasure to talk to on the interview and the bundle of nerves I was when I first picked up the phone rapidly morphed into someone who felt they were talking to a friend. Her openness was refreshing and her kindness when I lost my train of thought or couldn’t work out what to ask next was appreciated.
I have seen her perform loads of times and the first few times after the gigs she came out afterwards to mingle with the crowd a bit and I got talking to her again. I was thrilled that she had remembered who I was and really relieved that someone I respected musically could be respected personally too.
All that aside, last night’s gig was incredible. The Barbican Hall as a venue is a great one because the acoustics are so good. And Sarah was joined by some of her talented band as well as a strings ensemble presumably hired from the symphony that plays regularly at the Barbican and a gorgeous grand piano that SB herself played at one stage. The mix of songs was brilliant – kicking off with some of her older stuff but not her earliest and then playing almost the entirely of her new album, I Awake, which by the way was brilliant.
I’ve seen her in may different settings, small pub, seated intimate, big pub, big concert hall but she never ceases to inspire me. It has been interesting to compare the gigs as time has gone on from the perspective of the difference in terms of atmosphere (theatre seating or pub standing), but also I noticed a distinct difference in her confidence at this gig from the ones I’ve seen previously. The audience were incredibly enthusiastic so it obviously wasn’t just me and my soft spot that loved the gig.
An amazing performer and an artist in the truest sense of the word. If you’re not already a fan I encourage you to have a listen immediately!!