Jessie Reyez Brings YESSIE to London
The Juno Award-winning, Grammy-nominated Jessie Reyez did not disappoint on the finale of her YESSIE Tour.
The energy was palpable from the start with her supporting acts, Lavi$h and Deyaz. They delivered the goods, both artists giving us a look at their catalogue in a way that left the audience in awe and had someone yelling, “What is your name?! So that I don’t forget?” Deyaz said. Both artists’ sweet vocals had the audience captivated and geared up for when Jessie finally hit the stage. And when it did, it was nothing less than magic.
Jessie’s magic does not come from a complicated performance or exertion. Her energy, her love and passion for her music, and her supporters even going so far as to tell the audience that it’s a “no judgement zone” are all natural. The way she interacted with the crowd, asking people their names and asking questions that led into another song and another great performance, was so flawlessly executed that even people who were brought to the concert by someone else and had no idea who she was were brought to tears by the power in her voice. You could feel the love.
She started with “MOOD, Pt. 1” from her latest album and progressed through songs from “Before Love Came to Kill Us,” her second album, like “Coffin” which featured rapper Eminem. The best part of the evening, however, came in her encore, when she returned in an England football jersey to “One Kiss” by Calvin Harris and Dua Lipa, because, as she reminded us, “She wrote it!” It was more of a dance break, but that only increased the energy level with everyone jumping and singing the lyrics.
She then asked if she could perform her favourite song that she enjoys jamming to with her friends because, by the end of the night, everyone felt like Jessie Reyez was someone they’d known for years. It was “Bohemian Rhapsody.” Yes, by Queen, and everyone lost their minds! This performance, as many people around vocalised, proved how diverse an artist Jessie Reyez is, with her vocals off the charts. Everyone was in awe of Jessie’s incredible vocal range and skill.
All good things must come to an end, however, and the night ended with “Figures” from her first EP, “Kiddo” The lights down, torches up performance was the most intimate of the night, with the crowd singing most of the song as Jessie sat centre stage strumming her guitar. By far my favourite song of the night, I was struck by the power of her voice and the emotional connection she had with the audience.
Jessie Reyez is an artist in the purest way. Her attention to detail, her appreciation for her team, and her love for her supporters really and truly set her apart from most musicians today. She writes from the heart and has a unique way of captivating the listener through storytelling and poetically meaningful lyrics that hit you right in the core. I would be hard-pressed to name a better performance than the one I witnessed that night. Jessie is in a class of her own.
Cross The Tracks Festival is a day festival about music community, culture, family, flavour, and history.