On Friday 27th February, for my birthday, I headed to the Evertim Apollo. After years of being a Ryan Adams fan (and close monitoring of his UK tours via google alerts), I was finally able to see him live.
For those of you who are not aware of Ryan Adams - and yes, I do mean Ryan and not Bryan - he is an American singer/songwriter from North Carolina. Ryan first hit the music scene in the early nineties, and has to date released a staggering 14 albums and five EPs.
My particular favourite period of Adams' career thus far is when he sang with the Cardinals and released two albums "Cold Roses" and "Jacksonville City Nights." In terms of singles, Ryan Adams has had a number of great tracks, however the one that branched out to the largest audience was his cover of Wonderwall by Oasis. His cover even proved popular with Oasis lead singer Noal Gallagher who said "I never got my head round this song until I went to [see] Ryan Adams play and he did an amazing cover of it."
Anyway enough of the bio - lets get back to the gig. With any artist that has been around for over 10 years, the fan base was vast and diverse! There were young'uns and oldies, all wearing their leather jackets and excited for the performance ahead.
Supporting Adams that night was American singer and songwriter Natalie Prass. Natalie is a relatively new face to the music scene, only having just released her debut album in January of this year. Despite Prass' soft yet strong distinct vocals, her songs did very little to enrapture me. Overall I feel her performance did not do a great job in warming up the crowd. However saying that, I did feel Prass sang very well when she performed two duets with Ryan later in the evening.
It was clear by the cheers and applause from the crowd, they were ecstatic to see Ryan Adams. Dressed in his denims and standard mass of wild hair, Adams welcomed the crowd "That's right, its the weekend. Time to get sad." A man with a dry sense of humour, Adams seemed more than happy to take the mic out of himself and his 'depressed' fans! Even when a minor fight broke out near the end of his set, Ryan was able to keep up the banter and question how anyone could get so riled up to his music. Not one to be distracted, Ryan Adams soon got the show going again and announced 'Right, lets try another f***ing miserable song." Cue rapturous applause from the sold out crowd.
The set list for the evening included: Gimme Something Good, Let It Ride, Stay With Me, Dear Chicago, This House Is Not For Sale, Everybody Knows, My Winding Wheel, Dirty Rain, Magnolia Mountain, New York, New York, Kim, Two, My Wrecking Ball, I Just Might, I love You But I Don't Know What To Say, Your Fool, Oh My Sweet Carolina, La Cienega Just Smiled, Trouble, When The Stars Go Blue, I see Monsters and Come Pick Me Up.
What was great about this gig was seeing Ryan Adams perform some of his best singles for a solid two hours. The combination of great songs, banter and talent (vocals, guitar and harmonica) meant Ryan Adams was able to deliver a flawless night of bloody brilliant live music. He even was able to demonstrate his musical talent by singing an improv song "I ate something off the street" after overhearing a conversation from the crowd. A pure genius.
I am well and truly thrilled I can now scratch "see Ryan Adams live" off my bucket list. I would urge all fans out there to GO and see him live.
Upcoming gigs include:
5th June - The Governors Ball Music Festival - NYC
4th July - Calling Festival - London
To see the rest of his tour dates check out: http://www.songkick.com/artists/332590-ryan-adams/calendar