After opening for Sam Smith and Hozier in Philadelphia earlier this year, George Ezra returned on Tuesday to headline his own sold out show at the Trocadero. Just as Smith and Hozier did in 2014, the 21-year-old England native has risen to fame overnight. It seems Ezra has not grown completely accustomed to the fame, as evidenced by his bashful response of “Thank you” when a fan screamed “I love you, George!” from the audience. However humble he may be, Ezra’s deep and powerful voice was a true spectacle that night.
Ezra opened his set with “Cassy O’” and “Listen to the Man,” both singles from his debut album Wanted on Voyage. Between singing Ezra sipped from his hot tea, which he warned the audience he would be doing at the beginning of the show, and told stories explaining many of his songs. With an audience filled mostly with couples and parents accompanying their teenage children, Ezra figured that some people there were checking him out for the first time and weren’t quite sure if they were fans. He said he hoped they enjoyed themselves but if they didn’t like him, they could check out the music video for the song he’d be singing next, “Blame It On Me,” in which he “gets shit on by a bird within the first few seconds and hit by a car by the end.”
Following a handful of songs with a band accompanying him, Ezra took to the stage alone with nothing but his guitar, leading to a more intimate experience. Performing stripped down renditions of “Benjamin Twine” and “Leaving it Up to You,” all that could be heard was Ezra, his guitar and his fans singing along to every word. After being joined back on stage by the band, Ezra played his most popular song, “Budapest,” which included a prologue about him getting too drunk from rum he bought off a stranger in a park in Sweden and missing his train to the songs namesake.
After the whole “encore” ritual, complete with feet stomping and “George!” chants, Ezra and his band returned to the stage and performed “Blind Man in Amsterdam” and closed out the night with a powerful, energy-filled “Did You Hear the Rain?”. Earlier in the night while telling a story about his travels through Europe alone, Ezra stated that he wasn’t very good at entertaining himself, but if his performance on Tuesday night was any indication, he’s damn good at keeping his adoring fans enraptured and entertained.
Ezra returns to town on Sunday, July 26th, with Grace Potter and The Wailers at the XPoNential Music Festival. Tickets are on sale now here.
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