British singing babe Jorja Smith brought a calm energy to her Fine Line performance last night. The smooth-singing Drake collaborator sang a mix of unreleased tracks, explosive singles and cover songs. Here’s our five takeaways.
1) Wild jersey – Opening act Ama Lou repped the Minnesota Wild with a crisp hunter green jersey. Although the Londoner was 4,000 plus miles away from home, she fit right in as she warmed up the Minneapolis crowd. During her set, the throaty Sade-esque singer brought spunky, R&B flavor and attitude through lyrics off her debut concept EP like, “Even with a with a court order, I will never let you bail me out.”
2) Good vibes only – There was no restriction as to who could go up to the balcony in the venue, which left attendees free to roam without being scolded by security. On top of that, the crowd was polite overall, as latecomers didn’t forcefully push through to the front of the stage and people softly swayed to the alternative R&B jams. Jorja Smith’s drummer made sure to plant and light incense on his cymbal before the singer hit the stage, which filled the front of the venue with sweeter smelling smoke than live shows normally handle.
3) “Goodbyes” – Midway through Jorja’s set she introduced a new song called “Goodbyes” off her upcoming debut album Lost & Found. She explained that this song was an ode to a friend she lost, then suddenly the crowd became still, chatter paused, and beverage orders slowed way down. Several crowd members shed tears as Jorja belted painful lyrics about not getting to say goodbye to her friend one last time
4) Perfect covers – To balance out the sad songs, Jorja and her band rocked out cover versions of both TLC’s “No Scrubs” and Frank Ocean’s “Lost.” Selecting a popular ‘90s throwback and classic Frank track perfectly describes Jorja’s genre-bending, dancehall-infused style. Her outfit also gave a nod to the ‘90s, as her crisp track pants, clean Nike Air Force Ones and neon tube top all echoed Sporty Spice’s signature look.
5) Starting over – Before sending off the crowd with her bouncy single “On My Mind,” Jorja sang a new song, “Don’t Watch Me Cry,” about a one-sided relationship. Even through the recollections of let downs, late friends and being neglected, Jorja consistently acknowledged and grinned at the crowd. However, 20-year-old’s down-to-earth demeanor really shone when she asked if it was okay to restart “Don’t Watch Me Cry,’ because she had to cough.