“It’s the middle of October” – Mahalia charms audience members at Le Belmont on 20th October with a sold-out show
RnB powerhouse and tonight’s opening act Sebastien Mikael is already crooning away on stage by the time I manage to make my way through the heaving crowd outside into Le Belmont.
Born in Sweden, and now hailing from LA, Sebastien Mikael has become famous for his slow and soothing RnB hits. As he stands on stage, hitting high notes that could rival a female alto, complete with Mariah Carey style hand gestures, you can’t help but be transported to a place more peaceful and sensual than the packed and agitated crowd. If music is escapism, then Sebastien Michael is a musical genius, capable of sending his audience floating away with his dreamy sound and poetic lyrics.
British singer-songwriter and every young girl’s inspiration Mahalia jumps on stage with all the excitement and energy of someone arriving to their own birthday party.
Opening with ‘Hide Out’, the first track on her recently released debut album Love and Compromise, which quotes Eartha Kitt: ’What is compromise? Compromising for what? Compromising for what reason?’, Mahalia sets the tone for a night of heartfelt honesty and female empowerment.
Mahalia signed to Atlantic Records at just 13 and since then her sound has propelled her to fame on a global scale. Over the last few years, she’s built up a loyal following, and this evenings’ sold-out venue is evidence of that.
In between songs, Mahalia takes the time to get to know her audience talking to us as if we’re close friends, joking about always getting the burps on stage and telling us stories about her mother. It’s endearing and you can’t help but fall for her.
During a quiet moment, a phone starts ringing from the front of the crowd. Rather than taking offence at the interruption, Mahalia plays along, encouraging the fan to answer the phone so she can say hi. It’s obvious that Mahalia belongs on stage, and enjoys talking to her fans almost as much as singing to them.
Her music and performance are incredibly empowering, especially for young women. Lyrics like “You don’t know what you had, I’m amazing” stand out, and match the overflowing confidence you see from Mahalia on stage.
Seeing her live brings a whole new dimension to the album. You hear the backstories and inspiration for each song first hand. Her final words of wisdom to her audience are to hold a little tighter, wait a little longer and never feel that you have to wear a bra. These are words to live by, and it’s a performance that we won’t forget in a hurry.
Review – Cate SpreeShare this :