On November 26, my eldest son and I went to the show of Lianne La Havas @Paard van Troje, The Hague, The Netherlands. When we arrived at the (sold out) venue, singer Roseau was still on stage and you had to look twice to see if not already Lianne had already started playing, as they really look a bit like each other and they are both playing guitar. Roseau however sounds a bit more futuristic and electronic and less jazzy than Lianne La Havas does.
After Roseau had left, Lianne kept us waiting for a while. The stage was rebuilt for Lianne and they brought a big bowl with tropical flowers to the stage, similar as the flowers on the picture of Lianne’s most recent album cover “Blood”, to create the right atmosphere for the show.
Finally, dressed in a long silk skirt with a high split, a white, casually knotted shirt, high red platform shoes and a scarf in her hair, the tiny singer entered the stage. After the first few songs, Lianne apologized that she was so late and she told us that “it would never happen again”, but it seemed she and her band were stuck in traffic.
I must admit that I only knew Lianne’s latest album Blood (July 2015) very well, just as the single “Is your Love big enough?” from 2012.
She kicked off with the the great song “Green and Gold” from album “Blood”, about her Jamaican roots and this brought an instant great atmosphere in the audience. She also played my other favorite songs of “Blood”, “What You Don’t Do, Unstoppable, Midnight and Tokyo“. During “Grow” she asked the cooperation of the audience to sing the sentence “Turn up for this Love” while she continued to sing the rest of the song, which was nice and fun. From her first album, “Is your love Big enough”, I was very much impressed and touched by the songs “No Room for Doubt” (2011) and originally a duet with Willy Mason, where Lianne was the only one on stage with her guitar, so this sounded very small and intimate, “Lost and Found”, with the dreamy piano and great laser beams, that formed cute flowers on the stage at the end of the song and “Au Cinema”, which she combined with Pharrel’s Happy in the refrain.
Green and Gold
Is Your Love Big Enough?
What You Don’t Do
No Room For Doubt
Lost & Found
Elusive (Scott Matthew cover)
Never Get Enough
Besides doing the vocals, Lianne is playing a hollow-bodied 1964 Harmony Alden Stratotone guitar and her band exists of: Frida Touray (backing vocals); Cameron Miller (guitar); James Wyatt (keyboards); Adam Prendergast (bass) and Jay Sikora (drums). Jay Sikora worked previously with Paolo Nutini while recording Caustic Love and during his 2014/2015 world tour. He also worked with artists like Michael Kiwanuka, Emiliana Torrini and Badly Drawn Boy. Currently Jay Sikora is also Lianne’s Musical Director.
Lianne Charlotte Barnes (born 23 August 1989, with a Greek father and Jamaican mother), known professionally as Lianne La Havas, is a London-born British folk and soul singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. Her career began after being introduced to various musicians and singer Paloma Faith, for whom she sang backing vocals. In 2010, she signed to Warner Bros. Records, spending two years developing her songwriting skills before releasing any music publicly. Lianne La Havas’ debut album, Is Your Love Big Enough? (2012), was released to positive reviews from critics and earned her a nomination for the BBC’s Sound of 2012 poll and awards for the iTunes Album of The Year 2012.
To conclude I can say that Lianne La Havas is a modest, almost shy and sympathetic, yet very talented artist, we’ll hear much more about in the coming years. Both my son and I enjoyed the concert very much and it was definitely a night to remember!
Photo credits @Kamiel Scholten/Daniël de Borger (Oor.nl)