I’ve had a busy Monday in work, and I’ve typed around 35-40 letters today (which is a lot trust me), it’s 10:55pm and my feet hurt from dancing in heeled ankle boots, but I wanted to write a blog tonight, I felt inspired.
For my friend’s birthday I decided to buy her concert tickets, just like me she loves attending live events and is always up for something new. Now I wasn’t totally unaware of this performer, but I only knew of two of his songs, so I took a chance and bought us 2 tickets to see JP Cooper.
The show was held at the Tramshed in Cardiff, a really great, intimate venue with a hipster vibe and the ideal place for tonight’s concert. Now I wasn’t totally unaware of JP Cooper as the title of this blog post would suggest, but I knew about 4 of his songs, had heard some of his collaborations and first came across him randomly on Spotify when I stumbled across his song Passport home.
Most people know his summertime hit, September song of his collaboration with Jonas Blue called Perfect Strangers, I wouldn’t call him unknown, but I hope his music is more well known by people soon. I really love watching a performer who sounds better live than they do on a recording or on the radio. A live show can be a real test for some artists, and I’ve been to some concerts and been bitterly disappointed at how different some singers can sound so different live.
He recently released his first album in October, and I’ve streamed it a few times, but to me I felt like I was still taking a chance on an artist I didn’t know very well tonight. That was a plus. It can always be a gamble, but we were both really impressed but his bluesy vocal range and his likeable songs. He seemed like a really down to earth guy, and that will always draw me in.
I’ve noticed a lot at concerts that some singers choose to really engage with their audience and some don’t, and that may be for a number of reasons but sometimes it’s really important to the fans. JP engaged, he talked about some interesting things. He told us the origin of some of his songs, he likened collaborating with others was like marmite and welsh rarebit and how it was okay for men to cry and to draw beauty from pain, and this is what his song ‘Beneath the Streetlights and the Moon’ is about.
One thing you pick up on attending several different concerts is that the support act is usually really grateful and humble to be given a platform to support the artist they are travelling with. You’ll usually get to see a really great, sometimes unknown talent that can sometimes rival the star of the show. It’s like when you go to the cinema and you make sure you get your seat before the movie trailers start, because everyone loves the trailers. That’s why I’m always sure to get to a venue before the support act starts, it’s entertainment, so why would you want to miss some live music? When I went to see James Arthur back in March, he had a really talented support act, Australian singer named Matt Gresham and I’m still following his music today.
Previously, I would only spend money on attending live shows of artists that I loved and was desperate to see, but In recent times I’ve begun to feel that live music deserves a chance. Personally, I’m not into hardcore rock music, or opera, but I’ll give everything else in between a chance.
In the summer, I attended the Burning Lantern Fayre at the St Fagans museum, It was a different kind of event for the outskirts of Cardiff, and something I enjoyed very much. I knew of some of the artists performing, such as The Shires, Jack Savoretti and Tom Odell, they wern’t all huge mainstream artists but the experience was great, I just love live music.
A few years ago, an rather unknown Jack Savoretti played a small, intimate gig in a church around the corner from my house where my parents got married 25 years ago. I didn’t attend but my Mum did, she loved it and became a big fan of his. It just goes to show that we should go looking for new stars, new adventures and talents and not wait for them to just come to us.
I’d encourage everyone to take a chance on an artist they don’t know very well, even if like me you knew a small handful of an artist’s songs. You might be surprised, you might just be thankful you had a night out of the house or you might discover a brand new artist that you’ll see live 15 times in your life.mIf for some reason you don’t enjoy live concerts so much there is usually seating in most venues, sometimes I really don’t get the best view being 5ft 1 but it’s always worth it really, and maybe it’s something you can gamble on as a present for someone else like I did?
Click here to have a peek at JP Cooper’s YouTube channel.