Promptly at 8pm the lights dimmed in the Highline Ballroom and the first opening act appeared. After a few songs, the artist revealed his name. Major Myjah. Major definitely wowed the crowd with his melodic tunes and kept the energy high with a few upbeat songs as well. I absolutely loved his energy and the vibe from his song with the hook “California Living” was perfect for this crowd. Shortly thereafter, the second act, Candace Boyd, also held down her own with very relatable tracks. Some about being in love, others about the break up and indifference you feel afterwards with her track titled”What’s her name”. The ability for both of these artists to capture the crowd and keep the energy flowing throughout was very admirable for two up and coming music artists. Hats off to them!
Now it was time. The fluorescent XIX sign was lit and Ro James appeared with a bright orange jumpsuit resembling that of a car mechanic, round gold rimmed frames, a striped hat with a patterned scarf underneath. Oh so fitting for his Eldorado album. The soulfulness and R&B was heard in every song that he sang with much passion and clarity so you could hear every word that he spoke. I always immediately think of the perfect mix of Maxwell and Prince when I hear him sing. James’ vocal abilities and variation in range shown on his tracks automatically captivate you. I just sat and watched him lay it all out on the line while he sang “Everything” and knew it was very much heartfelt. I appreciated the intimacy and personal stories that James shared as well. From the naming of his album, as his first car was a 92′ Eldorado, the love he experienced with a Scorpio and his incomparable relationship with ‘Lisa’. Or the relationship he shared that allowed him to make my favorite track ‘A.D.I.D.A.S.’ and the influence from his mother to write a song not just about love or relationships but other real life factors that we all face, hence the creation of ‘Holy Water’. I’m sure I can pinpoint a couple favorites that are in fact your go to’s that you can relate to. To hear Ro explain the meanings behind the songs and share the stories with fans put his music into a different perspective for me.
As the night progressed, James performed songs from his 3-part EP Coke, Jack and Cadillacs as well as Eldorado. Some of the crowd favorites were ‘Already Knew That’, ‘Burn’ and A.D.I.D.A.S. Toward the end of the show, James did an acoustic opening of his hit ‘Permission’ and his band joined shortly after for the grand finale. To say I enjoyed this concert is definitely an understatement. I am definitely a fan of Ro James but left an even bigger one. I believe I recall James advising he had been doing music for about 10 years. Well Ro, job well done. Wishing him continued success. More pictures below and check out the live video in the video section.