John Newman: Live at Brixton Academy

Popping Champagne for our pre-drinks and propping up against the bar in Brixton, you know you’re at the next level of live music enjoyment.

Gone are the days I spent jumping around in the pit and sweating my socks off whilst other friends lost shoes, finaled by spending our sweet savings on rip-off band merch outside the venue… The t-shirts were odd shapes and shrunk after the first wash, but we loved it and revelled in our awesomeness.

Cat Foley Survival Survival John Newman Brixton Academy

As much as I loved it, it really is best left for a younger energy.

I took my mum to see John Newman play his headline UK tour at Brixton Academy on one of the two sold-out shows. My mum has been one of my biggest musical influences and so, as much as she educated me in the music of the 80’s, 90’s and installed, an eclectic appreciation and love of music into me, she equally has been a fan of my music choices over the years and now we find ourselves listening to very similar playlists.

Cat Foley Survival Survival John Newman HP Connect Cafe De Paris London

John Newman is one such artist on our playlist, I had seen him at the live HP Get Connected gig with my friend Sherin in April this year and had been blown away by his live performance, and he was such a sweet guy in the interview prior you can’t help but feel happy that he’s doing so well. So following this I bought my mum a copy of the CD and she was equally as hooked.

Cat Foley Survival Survival John Newman HP Connect Cafe De Paris London

So when the opportunity arose, it made sense to take my mum to see him live in London – this is where we get back to the Champagne… Well, it was the only element of glam we could add to the evening, as then we took to the dirty tubes of the city and shuffled into the humidity that is Brixton Academy to enjoy our plastic cup G&Ts.. Naturally we found ourselves a spot at the back by the bar. We missed the support because we were, as ever, fashionably late (Champagne is not for rushing!).

Cat Foley Survival Survival John Newman Brixton Academy

The gig started with a video montage of some of his most famous performances and interviews played behind a sheer curtain before flurry of ticker tape came down as he kicked-off with his recently no.1 hit, Blame with Calvin Harris. The gig was fantastic whilst he entertained running back and forth the width of the stage, up and down his staircase, I’m not sure his choreography is quite the Elvis Presley he was hoping for, but really, with flawless vocals, who cares?

Cat Foley Survival Survival John Newman Brixton Academy

Despite how it may sound, Brixton Academy is one of my favourite venues; the sloping floor meant that even by the bar we had a decent view of the stage and the accoustics are always great. Plus it was where I went for my first gig way back in 2005. I took a moment to remind my mum  of how I’d made my way to London and acquire a gig ticket without paying a penny after her strict, ‘no way, no how’ response to my pleas to go. So naturally I went, she had to pay all my friends back after and I had a good four months of grounding.Cat Foley Survival Survival John Newman Brixton Academy

All in all we both had a great girls night, John Newman remains high in my estimations and my mum remains her ever fantastic, slightly mischevious company.. I won’t disclose our gin bill by the end of the night, let’s just say keeping the bar up is a thirsty job.Cat Foley Survival Survival John Newman Brixton Academy

My taste for drinks may have matured but my love of live music remains as young and excitable as ever, it’s always fantastic to have it satisfied to such a stellar extent by new talent, even more so when it’s beside one of my biggest musical influences… This is likely to become a more regular occurrence, we’re off to Paolo Nutini this Thursday!

Book a gig in Brixton here

Check out John Newman here




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