James Bay with Joseph at Humphrey’s by the Bay, April 17th 2016


The vocals of the artists at this concert were all amazing. Each singer could have very well been manufactured in a studio.
Examining the band Joseph, the crowd squeaked scattered and spurious applause only after realizing that the women were no longer simply tuning their instruments and checking their microphones but the three had already allowed their songs to introduce them. They are a group of sisters: Natalie, and twins Meegan and Allie Closner. The name of the band stems from their hometown of Joseph, Oregon.
By the end of their set they received shouts of admiration and love. Joseph somehow made a venue that could seat at least two hundred people, seem like an intimate gathering. One singer, Meegan, ended up having a full conversation with some people in the front row as she was unplugging her guitar.
After their set, there was a break of about an hour to set up for the main act, which made a lot of people cross the line from excited anticipation to frustrated impatience. When James Bay did enter, the crowd erupted in screams. He started his set just playing guitar to an unknown song, showing off a skill he is not most known for.
The hat, that, such a part of him that it is included in his logo, could be seen on a few of the concert-goers; some of whom had been waiting for a chance to possibly meet him since 6:00am (the show started at 8:00pm).
Bay’s voice captivated the audience while his body language, countenance, and demeanor gave everyone butterflies. At the start of almost every song he switched to his guitar and would just play, sometimes the intro to the song and sometimes a section of a seemingly random one. At the end of his songs he would look out to the crowd and give a little half smirk that showed how amazed and proud he was to be up in front of these people. After songs with more of the audience singing he would just say “Beautiful” to himself, away from the microphone, which showed a sweet sincerity to his actions.
There were some songs, “Scars” and “Incomplete,” when the entire crowd was absolutely silent, simply listening to his voice, until the chorus came and everyone sang along. To have such unity in a group of over a hundred people was an amazing sight.
As a whole, the audience matched the cool atmosphere of the venue and the performers. Very few people even took out their phones to record or take a picture, and when they did it was only for a few seconds. Everyone seemed to be present for the experience.

USD contributor
Bria Higginbotham