Aloe Blacc Live In London (Review)
Last week Thursday, Egbert Nathaniel Dawkins III - more commonly known as Aloe Blacc - took the stage at London’s Hammersmith Apollo in only the way you would expect: with pure style and class. After a bizarre opening act from Australian female MC, Maya – which literally consisted of her dropping a couple of lines and then dancing to songs on her own for an hour and a half – the crowd were even more excited when Aloe and his band, The Grand Scheme, finally hit the stage at around 8.45pm.
Looking effortlessly cool in a shirt and a beige blazer, combined with a pair of jeans and a constant smile, the man’s enthusiasm and boundless energy shone through his entire performance and Hammersmith truly loved every moment of it. With his second album, 'Good Things', under his belt, Aloe Blacc sang his way through his much-loved material, including the funky 'Hey Brother', the stunning biographical, 'Mama Hold My Hand', the beautiful 'Femme Fatale', 'Green Lights' and, of course, his popular debut single, 'I Need A Dollar'.
The audience were exposed to the energetic moves Aloe showed off throughout, particularly when asking the crowd to split in two to replicate the TV show, ‘Soul Train’. Aloe also took it upon himself to show he is no one-trick pony, demonstrating his hip-hop roots and rapping skills, which first landed him in world of music. After demands for an encore brought him back to the stage, the cold English weather had clearly inspired him to sing about only one destination – his home of California, as he fondly sang ‘California Dreaming’ and made a special request to all parents to teach their children about music and to keep it alive through the generations
Aloe Blacc truly captured the hearts of an audience who have clearly been craving the old school soulful sound that the fantastic musicianship of The Grand Scheme only enhanced on this wonderful night.
Words: Lori Lane (@gleaming_gem)
Online editing: Joseph 'JP' Patterson (@Jpizzledizzle)