Sara Bareilles - Bush Hall London
California's Sara Bareilles is currently skipping up the charts with her extremely infectious "Love song" single.She took time off from her busy promotional schedule to entertain a capacity crowd at London's Bush Hall.
This was Sara's first headlining set in the Capital so there were a lot of people eager to see her perform, myself included.
I picked up the US version of Sara's first major release album "Little voice" on the strength of the "Love song" track at the end of 2007 and was lucky enough to catch her official showcase at SXSW in March of this year.
I'm not a huge lover of the Bush Hall venue.
As a fan I hate it when it's seated as it loses a lot of atmosphere and as photographer it's a pain in the arse when it's standing as you've got to get there early, squeezing your way to the front, staying in the one spot for the duration of the gig.
Sara's show was standing so I picked a place down the left hand side as the right half of the auditorium had their view obscured by the huge piano that Sara would hide behind later in the evening.
I was still a slight distance from the action but luckily Sara's lovely fans next to the stage granted me the privilege of a front row spot for the first few minutes of the performance.
A quick straw poll while waiting for Sara to take to the stage found the audience split between curious "Love song" listeners and devoted fans, including a few who had seen Sara play supporting Maroon Five a few years previously.
Sara was joined on stage by three band members on guitar, bass and drums pulling her set from her "Little voice" collection, with "Bottle it up" starting the proceedings with its Beatleesque "Love, love love" opening, followed by "Vegas".
Sara's musical output tends to fall between bouncy piano led Pop songs like "Love song" and beautiful Bareille ballads.
Midway through the set you'd be forgiven for thinking Sara was a man hater due to her frequent digs at the male species throughout her performance, including banishing the "Non vaginas" from the stage so she could play "Fairytale" a tounge in cheek look at what happens after the happy ending, but it was just playful banter and I'm sure none of the "gentlemen" in the house were offended!
One male "member" did let us down though, barging to the front of the stage as Sara was explaining the background to "Fairytale".
From where I was standing he seemed to be offering up his choice of song for the male side of the story but he just came across as rude and obnoxious, leading to Sara asking for a round of applause for the embarrassing moment!
After completing "Fairytale" and bringing back the boys Miss Bareilles took a break away from the piano at this point, picking up a guitar as the set took a detour for a couple of songs with Sara and band offering up a Beatles cover in the shape of "Oh darling" as they had been recording earlier at the Abbey Road studios and new song "August moon" which came to life after walking in on her boyfriend "on the job"!
After album track "Come round soon" Sara was back at the piano plucking "Love song" from the set list.
The audience were with her all the way the minute the opening chords were pounded out on the piano, leading to the inevitable congregational singalong.
Mind you it wasn't the first time the audience had tested their singing prowess during the set, with Sara taken aback slightly by the audience's knowledge of her material currently unreleased in the UK.
Sara's set ended with "Many the miles" with many audience members joining in with the "How far do I have to go to get to you.." refrain, ending the main part of the set on a great note.
Sara returned to play one last song, the gorgeous "Gravity".
It's a real heartfelt ballad and probably Miss Bareilles finest hour.
Unfortunatly this fact was completely lost on a hideously inconsiderate audience member who proceeded to shove a point and shoot camera as far as she could into Sara's face for the duration of the song!
From where I was standing I could see a couple of Sara's crew considering whether to make a move to stop her but they obviously felt it would do more harm than good.
Luckily the "moment" wasn't ruined as it was a passionate delivery of the album's final song, with the crowd roaring their appreciation after the stunning You're keeping me down" part of the middle eight.
Even though "Love song" went down a storm Sara was rewarded with the best response of the night on "Gravity"'s completion, and rightly so!
Sara's an endearing performer, with a story for every song.
Her set at Bush Hall is currently battling it out with Nicole Atkins show at Soho Revue Bar for my UK gig of the year!
Sara's "Little voice" album is released in the UK on the 16th of June.
Check out her My Space page for more details.
Last updated: 30/05/2018 22:30:18