2019 Concert Recap

As 2019 comes to a close, I wanted to take a moment to reflect on the amazing artists I’ve had the privilege of seeing live this year. Bring on 2020!

Bad Suns, 3/1/19:

My first concert of 2019 was a blast. Christo Bowman, lead singer, put on an incredible show, and my friend and I witnessed it all from the front row. The band played all of the crowd faves (“Cardiac Arrest,” “Salt,” and “Off She Goes” to name a few), plus exclusive material from their latest album, Mystic Truth, which had not yet been released. My favorite song to hear live was their 2017 single, “This Was a Home Once.” The iconic guitar intro and relatable lyrics made for a perfect sing-along moment. Another memorable moment was when Christo stood on the crowd mid-show. Mind-bending to witness, and incredible to experience from the barrier.

The 1975, 4/27/19:

I mean…what can I say? Of course, this was my fave concert of 2019 by a long shot. The whole show was about 2 hours, but it felt like 2 minutes. Time flies when you’re ROCKIN’ out HARD to your fave band. The 1975 are incredible performers and surprise me every time I see them. This time, Matty belted his popular single, “Sincerity Is Scary,” while strolling on a treadmill set up on stage. This prop was meant to mimic the song’s music video. This tour focused more on graphics and stage lighting than the physical boxes that the band has included/emphasized in past tours. During their politically- charged single, “Love It If We Made It,” intense phrases and video clips of real-world issues flashed like strobe lights across the screen.

Heart, 9/3/19:

Nancy and Ann Wilson of Heart were two prominent voices of my childhood. “Love Alive” was on repeat every Saturday while my family did weekend house cleaning. Hearing that song live during this concert, which included Ann’s killer flute-playing skills, was pretty surreal. Plus, the band did their famous rendition of Led Zeppelin’s “Stairway to Heaven.” Check out my videos here.


Joseph, 9/15/19:

I’ve been following these talented Portland girls since the early days of I’m Alone, No You’re Not. I met them in 2016 when they were about to embark on a world tour with singer-songwriter James Bay, and they’ve blown up since then! This September concert, which was as small, acoustic show, was intimate and raw. Each of the girl’s voices shined through as they performed tracks from their latest record, Good Luck, Kid. Plus, they were just as sweet and friendly, 3 years later.

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The Paper Kites, 9/17/19:

The most chill concert I’ve attended all year. The stage was set as if we were being  serenaded from the band’s living room, complete with blinds placed on each side of the stage that cast long, moody shadows. This was the first ever show where I was given a “press pass” as a music blogger! That aspect definitely made the experience even more magical. My favorite song to see live was “Bloom.”

5SOS, 12/5/19:


This concert was an unplanned, super fun, blast from the past. I was invited last minute to attend this show with my friend, which was actually a Chainsmokers concert with 5 Seconds of Summer as the opener. (We were there for 5SOS, obvi.) 5SOS, for those of you who are unfamiliar, were an insanely popular Australian boyband in 2014. In high school, my two best friends and I went to Seattle to see them, wore their merch, and followed them religiously on Twitter. Although they’ve died down in popularity since then, they’re still making great music. It was SO much fun to see them again, older, cuter (in my opinion) and still performing with so much energy on stage! Check out my videos of the show here.

Charlie Puth, 12/7/19:

Charlie Puth KILLED it. If you didn’t know, he’s gifted with perfect pitch, so his voice is as smooth as butter live and he can make any minor mistake seem intentional. Charlie introduced us to his adorable lab puppy, Charlie Jr., sung two of his hits, “Attention,” and “Mother,” and one Christmas carol during this small, acoustic show. It was a Charlie Puth Christmas!

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Concerts I’m attending in 2020 (so far):

Dermot Kennedy: 1/10/20: I can’t wait to see a full-length Dermot concert! I’ve only seen him live once, which was a small show where he did about three songs. I’m looking forward to hearing the new tracks off his 2019 record, Without Fear.


Happy New Year, followers! I hope 2020 is filled with good music, loving friends/family, and new experiences. Even when things get hard, remember that you can always turn to music and the people it connects you to.




2018 Concert Recap

2018 was a great year for new records and live shows. Here’s a little recap of the concerts I attended in 2018!

George Ezra: 5/8/18, Roseland Theater

Processed with VSCO with hb1 presetI saw UK artist George Ezra perform in a small, local venue in Portland long before the success of his breakout single, “Budapest” in 2014. His booming, distinctive voice stuck with me after the performance, and I instantly became a fan. I won tickets to this concert in May through a contest his label created. I participated in various “fan activities” like watching George’s music videos multiple times, tweeting about him, and sharing his social media pages. I earned “points” that translated into number of entries, and I was my city’s winner! The concert was amazing–George played a full set of songs from both his debut record, Wanted On a Voyage and sophomore album, Staying at Tamara’s. I was thrilled when George performed my most favorite song of his, “Song 6.” This is a bonus track that appears on the deluxe edition of Wanted On a Voyage. It was magic to watch George perform it. Purple and blue lights on stage swirled around him as he sang, his eyes closed the whole time. I MAY have gotten a little emotional… 😉

Lucy Dacus: 5/26/18, Bloodworks Live Studio

Lucy, an indie rock/alternative singer-songwriter from Virginia, captured her audience from the very first song, “Night Shift.” (From her latest album, Historian.) Instantly, it became my favorite track. It tells a story of raw heartbreak and the conflicting feelings partners feel amidst the aftermath of a breakup. Immediately, Lucy reminded me of a few other of my favorite artists, like Phoebe Bridgers (whom she has performed with) and Courtney Barnett. Like these artists, she also seems to follow the “talk-singing” style, which reminds me a lot of when people read poetry out loud. I had the opportunity to meet her after the show, and she was so kind! (I’m not going to include the meet and greet picture here though, I look awful lol.) If you ever get the chance to see Lucy live, definitely check her out!

Dermot Kennedy: 5/27/18, Bloodworks Live Studio


Dermot Kennedy, an R&B/alternative singer-songwriter from Dublin, Ireland, was the most unique artist I saw live in 2018. According to his online bio, “the young Dubliner draws inspiration from all the moments of brightness and darkness this world has to offer, crafting music that’s at once soaring and intimate, stripped-back and explosive. Stuttery hip-hop and R&B-influenced percussion underpins his weathered vocals as he combines organic and electronic elements into an arresting, emotional blend that calls to mind the adventurous arrangements of Bon Iver, and James Blake.” Dermot is a huge fan of Glen Hansard, another favorite of mine, who he ran into by chance on the streets of Dublin. A few months later, Glen invited Dermot to open for him on stage at a huge Christmas show! Dermot had a crazy strong stage presence when I saw him, and his voice really bounced off of the walls in the small studio. He mostly performed tracks from his 2017 EP, Doves and Ravens, plus  his most memorable song, “Young & Free.”

Death Cab For Cutie: 9/24/18, Hult Center

I’ve been listening to Death Cab since I was little, so when my friend offered me his extra concert ticket, of course I said yes! DCFC put on a great show, and engaged the crowd in between every song. It was so fun to hear some old classics in addition to new, like “Soul Meets Body,” which I’ve listened to forever, but also “Gold Rush,” from their latest record Thank You for Today.

Hozier: 10/20/18, Roseland Theater

Hozier played this Portland venue two nights in a row, and I caught the second show. My friend and I are both huge fans of Hozier, so naturally we lined up early and ended up being in the front row. (While waiting in line, we pressed our ears against the doors and could hear him soundchecking inside.) It was insane–standing that close to Andrew (Hozier’s real name) and his band was a dream come true. He started off the show with his hit single, “Nina Cried Power,” which I wrote about in an earlier post. Hozier also graced us with what was an unreleased track at the time, “Movement.” Andrew was accompanied by his incredible band which is composed of some insanely talented musicians from all over the globe, including Kristen Rodgers (backing vocals, percussion, keyboard) and Suzanne Santo (fiddle, guitar, vocals) from Ohio. Suzanne first sang with Hozier as part of the alt-country-blues duo, Honey Honey, when they joined him to perform Work Song at a benefit concert in May 2017.


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Concerts I’m attending in 2019 (so far):

The 1975, 4/27/19: This will be my third time seeing my favorite band, and I’m ecstatic! I’m crossing my fingers that they play a mixture of new and old material, especially a few of my favorite songs, like “Robbers,” “Paris,” “If I Believe You,” and “Inside Your Mind.” Each time I’ve seen The 1975, they sweep me off my feet. I completely forget where I am, and I get lost in the music. Matty and the boys put on an incredible show, and they always come through with a stellar stage setup.

Bad Suns, 3/1/19: This will be my first time seeing Bad Suns live, and I’m really looking forward to it. I’ve been listening to them for a few years now– they were the first record I was gifted when I received my first record player for Christmas a few years back.


See you in 2019, fellow music lovers!

(All photos, videos and gifs are mine.)


CONCERTS: Passenger


I’ve been lucky enough to see singer-songwriter Passenger live three times now, and each time, he never ceases to impress me with his infectious energy, crowd involvement, funny travel stories, and remarkable music. Last month, I had the pleasure of seeing him in Portland, Oregon with my friend Shayna, who bought me tickets for Christmas! (Click the picture above to see a clip of Passenger performing his song “Life’s For The Living.”)

Michael Rosenberg, also known as Passenger, is most famous for his single “Let Her Go,” which, he jokes, often gets confused with the hit Disney song “Let It Go.” He formed the initial band, Passenger, with singer and friend Andrew Phillips in 2003. They produced one album, then the band broke up in 2009. After that, Michael continued to pursue music on his own, keeping the stage name Passenger as he busked around the world solo. He is good friends with singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran, and performs with him often. My favorite duet of theirs is “Heart’s on Fire.”

Each of Passenger’s songs tell a story. Focusing on themes of life, loss, laughter, love, change, travel, stars, summer nights, fear, shimmering waves, growing old, and his views of the world, Passenger captures vivid scenes and memories through his music. His latest album is titled Young As the Morning Old As the Sea.



Before Passenger came on stage in Portland, the fabulous Paper Kites performed, an Australian band who formed in 2010. This was a fun surprise for me–I listen to The Paper Kites regularly, and I even played one of their tracks recently on my weekly college radio show. They rocked! I was standing directly in front of the guitarist, who had so much energy and incredible skill. I even met the guys after the show (see above), and talked to them about my music blog and radio show. They were pretty stoked to hear that I had played them on the air. Along with being enormously talented, these guys are so funny and kind. Check out their latest album “Twelvefour,” here, and click here to watch a clip of their performance in PDX. (Pictures below are mine.)



My friend and I were first in line about 2 hours prior to the concert, and ended up being front row once we got inside the venue! It was amazing to be at the barrier–I’ve only ever experienced it at one other concert. Passenger was so interactive with the crowd–he responded to fans shouting compliments, and talked to all of us as if we were old friends of his. Being so close to him standing on the edge of the stage as the lights reflected off his guitar and the beads of sweat on his forehead made the whole experience so raw, real, and incredibly fun.

Passenger told a few different stories through out his set. He started by explaining the story behind his song “Travelling Alone,” from his album Whispers II. Michael said he initially struggled to write this song–he had the first half of it written, but wasn’t sure how to continue it.

Me at the concert.

He recalled the day when he had crossed paths with an Australian man who was travelling alone. The man explained that he and his wife had saved up to go on an extravagant trip together after their children had grown up, but she had died before they had been able to go. To honor her memory, the man decided to take the trip anyway. Along the way, however, he found that it was more difficult than he expected–he began to feel further away from home, and further from his wife, than he ever had before: “He said ‘I’m a long way from the Gold Coast. Furthest I’ve ever known. Oh and this just ain’t my home. It was my wife’s idea, but she’s no longer here. She left me travelling alone.’

The other half of the song is written about a woman Michael met during his travels. Her husband left her, and she told him the story: “‘See, ten years with this man. And a life time of plans. Oh, and I loved him to his bones. Now I’ve lines on my skin…And he’s traded me in. He left me travelling alone.'” Michael described to us the process of intertwining the two stories in order to weave the song together. Although the two stories are very different from each other, they shared a common theme of lost love experienced in different ways. Listen to it here!

Passenger played a mix of old and new tracks during his concert–one being “27,” a fast-paced, witty single that tells the story of his life up to the age of 27. Before performing it, he reminded the crowd of the importance of doing the things that make you happy, regardless of what anyone else might think. He wrote “27,” during a time in his life where he felt he had to “sell out to get sold”–he struggled to create music that he knew producers and record labels would enjoy, but not necessarily content that brought him joy. I sang along to every word!

After his final song, the encore was loud enough to break the glass windows. He had wrapped up the show with his single “Scare Away the Dark,” a fan favorite that features a distinctive chorus of “oh, oh oh, oh, oh oh no’s” that the crowd continued to belt even after Michael had left the stage. After a few minutes, he came back on and finished up the show with “Holes.” Click the photo below to watch the fun encore!


After the show ended, Shayna and I took our chances and waited outside in the rain in hopes of meeting Michael. After about an hour or two, he came out and greeted us! He was so kind, asking us if we enjoyed the gig. I gave him a big hug, telling him that we loved the show, especially since we were lucky enough to get front row. “Oh yeah, I saw you dancing and singing!” he responded with his thick British accent. We chatted for a few minutes about Portland and music before he hopped onto his tour bus.











Overall, it was an unforgettable night! Thank you to Passenger for being such a down-to-earth, talented performer, and Shayna, who made this night possible 🙂

CONCERTS: Tori Kelly

imageTori Kelly

Last week, my friend Annie & I finally got to see one of our favorite artists live on her #WhereIBelongTour: Tori Kelly! Tori started out on YouTube, and after being eliminated from American Idol, she began working on her own music when her YouTube career took off. She has an incredible voice that seems to have no limits–she can cover every song flawlessly, always adding her own sense of flair to the piece. She is able to sing extremely high notes, and she reminds me a bit of artists like Ariana Grande & Mariah Carey. I’ve been a fan of Tori for about two years, and she’s recently been making music with a few of my other favorite artists, including Ed Sheeran!

Tori’s opener was Us The Duo, an extremely cute, singing couple. Us The Duo got started on Vine, similar to Tori’s career on YouTube. They went viral and eventually gained a loyal fan base of over 4 million people. Now they’re touring all over the world. I absolutely loved their set. They sang a cover or two, and performed a ton of songs from their chart-topping album No Matter Where You Are. Their chemistry on stage was so genuine. They sang into each others’ eyes, and kept sneaking looks at each other as they took turns with their parts. ADORABLE.

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When Tori finally came on, the crowd went wild. She had been teasing us for hours on Snapchat and Twitter, tweeting out things like this:



Tori debuted songs off her upcoming album, Unbreakable Smile, which really got me hyped for it’s release on June 23rd. Additionally, she belted out a few throwback songs that everyone knew the words to, like her most popular single, “Dear No One.”
My other favorite song that she performed was “Confetti.”


She had an insane amount of energy on stage. She got the crowd involved and excited during her loud, fast-paced songs, (like her most recent single “Aint’ Nobody Love“) and when she sang her heartfelt, personal songs the audience quieted and it seemed as if she was singing to each one of us individually.

CGoICFVVAAAItwQIf you get a chance to see Tori live, I’d highly recommend it! She aslo loves meeting people, and often has fun meet and greets set up before her shows. I didn’t get to meet her, but I heard about the experience. On this tour, Tori ran a contest for fans to hang out with her before the show & drink tea. She posts a Snap of #teawithtori after each city she visits! (Tori’s SnapChat: KoriTelly)

If you are trying to meet Tori but don’t want to pay, get in line pretty early when going to one of her shows. Rumor has it that she says a quick hello to super dedicated fans waiting outside!

                     Find Tori:





CONCERTS: Bastille


The Last Stand Tour. One incredible night. November 13, 2014…sold out. On a rainy & blustery Thursday night two weeks ago, I had the pleasure of seeing one of my favorite bands, Bastille. (With awesome opener Ella Eyre!) In this post, I’ll talk about a few of my favorite moments from the show!

Ella Eyre, a British singer-songwriter from London, was Bastille’s flawless opening act.  As soon as she opened her mouth and sang the first note, I was in awe. Her voice filled the stadium as she effortlessly belted out a few of her killer songs. Her voice reminds me of Adele mixed with a little R & B. She was super engaging with the audience; she taught us songs, urged us to bring out lighters & phones during the slow songs, and took some cute Instagram pics of the crowd. Her fun, neo-pop look along with her wild, curly hair intrigued me just as much as her voice did! My favorite song she performed (and my favorite song she’s written) was “Comeback.” It’s a super sassy tune, and so fun to belt out when you’re home alone in your room. Check out Ella Eyre’s YouTube here!


When Bastille finally came on stage, the crowd went wild. Hundreds of dedicated fans were jumping in excitement from the floor section, and my friend and I were standing, screaming from our seats. (We got tickets for the seated part of the theater ahead of time, and ended up being in the 100’s section towards the very front. We had a great view!)

B2Y1R8wCYAA0Qr5Dan, the main singer in Bastille, was so overwhelmed by the love and support coming from the fans that night. All he seemed able to holler into his microphone after each song was “thank you so much!”

This band is so connected with their fans; Dan hopped down into the pit during the band’s performance of  “Flaws,” hugging and taking pictures with ecstatic fans on the floor. My friend Rhaeley (who waited a dedicated 13 hours to get front row in the pit) threw Dan a Toy Story 4 shirt (which her & Thomas Jensen made) at one point in the show. Dan picked it up from the stage, and said “Woah! A Toy Story 4 shirt! Thank you very much. I didn’t even know that existed yet…it’s that rare.” Check out the photo of Dan admiring the shirt below!

B2Y1R9YCEAAzw-eMy favorite song to see Bastille perform was “The Draw.” The guitars and chorus sounded so great as they reverberated through the theater, and the best part was when all the fans made Bastille’s trademark with their hands: the triangle. Check out this awesome picture Camille captured of her friend representing the Bastille triangle!


More of my favorite moments during the show:

Dan’s collaboration with Ella Eyre as they performed their cover of “No Scrubs.” Their voices sounded great together, and the energy they had together on stage was infectious! Here’s a little clip I got of the performance.

-The transitions between each song were amazing. Bastille had a large screen mounted on the stage. After/during each song, the screen played clips from their music videos, or projected super cool designs & Bastille trademarks.


I loved seeing Bastille perform one of their most popular songs, “Oblivion.” Everyone in the audience pulled out their lighters & phone cameras, waving them silently as Dan belted out the lyrics. It was so calming, & looked great in the dark of the theater. Here’s a small clip I caught of the song.

The closing song was definitely one of the highlights of the show. Bastille ended their concert with their hit single, “Pompeii.” During the song, Ella Eyre and her band, along with Bastille’s band were on stage, signing and dancing along, banging drums while the audience sang along with them. My friend and I stood up, dancing, laughing, and singing the lyrics from our seats. It was such a memorable concert experience! Check out a clip of the song below. (Remember to watch it in the highest quality!)

Overall, I had such a great time at Bastille’s concert. I’d highly recommend going to see them if you ever get the chance. It’s so worth it! Check out the band’s social media below.






image 3 words that describe this band: talented, sincere, and hilarious! Last Monday, I had the pleasure of seeing and meeting  these 4 lovely boys from Manchester: Charley, Jake, Danny, and Lewi, also known as RIXTON! In 2012, Rixton formed under the name “Relics.” They changed their name to “Rixton” shortly after though, when they discovered someone else owned the name “Relics.” Rixton first started their music career on YouTube, uploading videos of themselves covering popular songs. Watch my favorite cover they’ve done, Neyo’s “Let Me Love You,” here! (They look so young in this video!)

Since starting their YouTube, their fanbase (#Rixters) has grown and spread all over the world. Now, they are signed with Scooter Braun, and the boys just finished their #brokenheartedtour across the UK & America. Fans everywhere love them for their charm, sincere love and appreciation towards their fans, and amazing talent. Janelle, a #Rixter from Seattle says, “I found them through a link to their cover of Poison a year and a half ago, and I have loved them since– they have such true talent!”

I got to see Rixton perform in a small, acoustic venue with my friend (where I see a lot of my faves, haha), and ended up being second row! During the show, Rixton played two covers: “Ignition,” and “Hold On, We’re Going Home.” They also performed two of their own songs, “Me and My Broken Heart,” and their new single,”Wait On Me.” They sounded incredible! They were so engaging with the audience, and the whole show felt like we were all having conversations with the boys mixed with them playing songs. They had us singing along, clapping, and even laughing so hard my stomach hurt. I loved that they all play an instrument as well as sing; that’s one quality I always love to see in a band. Check out a few clips I put together from the show here!

imageMy friend & I meeting Rixton!

During one part of the show, they did a “Question and Answer With Rixton,” segment, and my friend and I worked up the courage to raise our hands and ask the boys a question! Check out the video here. (Jake nicknamed us the Olsen Twins since we both asked the question, haha!) After the show and meet and greet (where they were very sweet and gave my friend and I big hugs), we waited outside and got a few selfies/talked to the boys. (Check out my selfies below–you’ll spot Danny photo-bombing in one of them). Overall, it was a super fun day. Rixton are so talented, and it makes me happy to see them getting so much attention this past year!

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Follow Rixton on Twitter here.

Browse their website here.

Check out their YouTube videos here.

Listen to their latest single here.

See what silliness they’ve been up to lately here.


In this category of A Perfect Playlist, I’ll share my experiences at recent concerts I’ve attended, and a little bit of information about the artist I went to see!



Unique music paired with some wacky music videos–that’s OK Go, an alternative rock band that formed in 1998 in Chicago. I went to see this amazing band perform at a small acoustic venue on Sunday, and I was so intrigued by their sound. Xylophones, guitars, drums and the style of their voices put together keep you interested through out all of their songs, and even a little bit memorized.

Being in such a small venue, I was able to experience OK Go’s incredible music up close, which was great. When the band was interviewed during the show, they talked about how along with their music being popular, they’ve also had a lot of success with their homemade music videos. Check out their latest music video, The Writing’s On The Wall–it’s super trippy and will leave you in awe!

Since their formation, many of these videos OK Go have put together have gone viral–including one of their first videos, Here It Goes Again, released in 2006. They performed this song when I saw them, and it instantly became one of my favorites. The song I loved most that they performed, though, was This Too Shall Pass. Check out the crazy music video for it here!

If you get an opportunity to see OK Go in concert, it’s definitely worth it!

imageMy friend & I meeting OK Go!

Check out the band’s social media sites here:




OK Go’s new album, Hungry Ghosts will be released October 2014!