By Johna Autencio
Photos by Lee-Ann Richer
Singer-songwriter Leon Bridges brought down the house at Massey Hall on Thursday night when he returned to Toronto for a sold out show on his Coming Home tour.
At only 26-years old, Bridges brings a modernized taste of vintage old school soul back to life. That can only mean an incredible and nostalgic night like you were back in the ’50s and ’60s.
The night started off with opening act, Son Little, a rhythm and blues musician from Philadelphia. Dressed in a trench coat and fedora hat, he performed his original music for almost an hour. With his soulful and raspy vocals, Little had perfect range, especially when he performed his song, “Lay Down” that included beautiful harmonies from the help of his three other band mates by his side. Although not much of a talker, Little quoted to the audience, “Less talk, more music” reminding the audience why you should even be at a concert in the first place and something to truly appreciate.
Overall, Son Little was definitely a great vocalist, who performed awesome music to start off the night for the audience.
The moment Leon Bridges appeared on stage, he made quite the entrance by dancing his way to his microphone, already full of energy to perform his first song of the night, “Smooth Sailin'”. His presence alone changed the entire atmosphere in the venue. Playing songs from his Coming Home album, as well as new songs like “Hold On”. He also covered “Helpless” by one of his favourite legendary Canadian artists, Neil Young’s. Bridges was full of so much heart and soul that every time he finished a set, he would knock it out of the park instantly. When watching him live, you can see and feel how much passion and love he has for music, especially in his genre.
Donned in a suit and tie, it was definitely a refreshing feeling getting to watch a young man with so much groove perform music that most musicians his age wouldn’t be expected to create and sing – an incredible talent who has sold out shows to audiences of all ages.
Needless to say, Leon Bridges nailed every performance on stage and his music hits all the right notes. He is an exceptional artist worth every dollar to see live, and clearly has a long career ahead of him.