Lewis Capaldi in Edinburgh: ‘the Scottish Beyonce’ thrills fans with short set and Q&A session at O2 Academy
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Music fans in Edinburgh have been a tad spoiled these past few days – and I'd know. On Saturday, I took my 10-year-old daughter Elena to her first ever gig as we joined the 55,000 who witnessed Queen Bey delivering a masterclass in the rain at Murrayfield, while on Tuesday afternoon, it was a solo trip to the O2 Academy to catch the self-proclaimed ‘Scottish Beyonce’ at the first of three same-day shows he was performing.
At the first gig, which kicked off at 1pm, Lewis Capaldi had a packed crowd in stitches during a hilarious Q&A session, before tugging on their heartstrings during a short but perfectly executed set.
Hosted by local comedian Daniel Sloss, the event was part gig and part stand-up comedy show. It was a lot of excitement for a Tuesday afternoon, that's for sure.
The 30-minute-long event started with some questions from the audience, most of which were met with hilarious responses from Messrs Capaldi and Sloss.
“Thank you for making me rich,” the chart-topping singer from Whitburn told the crowd jokingly at the start. “I was given the opportunity to do an extra show in Edinburgh, and there is always the fear that everyone’s like ‘f*** no why would we come and see you again?’ But you’re here and it’s not embarrassing, so thank you very much.”
“It would be devastating if the first two shows sold out, as they did, and then none of the tickets for the third show shifted,” said Daniel.
Lewis replied saying it was “genuinely a worry” for him, before thanking those who had come out to see him.
Among the first questions Lewis answered one concerned his recent Netflix documentary, How I'm Feeling Now, which charts his journey from ambitious teen with a viral performance to Grammy-nominated pop superstar.
“It wasn’t my idea,” replied the singer. “If I had any inkling of what it was gonna be, I wouldn’t have done it. I was presented this idea of… listen, I was riding high, it was 2019, Covid wasn’t a thing yet, and it was like ‘Listen big dog, we’re gonna do this f****** documentary and it's gonna be how your life is f****** amazing… you’re partying, you’re having casual but protected sex, you’re playing these big huge shows’… and I was like, ‘amazing, it’s gonna be a documentary about how f****** cool I am!’”
He went on to say that once Covid happened, and he was back living at his parents’ house, the documentary took a different turn, one that painted him in a less glamorous light, as he was “dealing with some sh** mentally”. He added that it put him in a far more vulnerable position than he’d anticipated being in.
Lewis was also asked to name his favourite Disney character (“I like Jafar, because he’s got a nice little moustache and beard combo, and a talking bird”) and for his thoughts on a new mental health music festival called Let’s Go Mental, which he said “sounded incredible”.
With the Q&A done and dusted, Lewis took centre stage and treated us to a three-song set that started with his recent No.1 single Wish You The Best, taken from his just-released sophomore album Broken By Desire To Be Heavenly Sent. Whether or not his break-up songs touch you inside, there’s no denying that this guy has an amazing voice – and the crowd lapped it up.
Lewis then asked the audience which track from the new album they would most like to hear, with new fan-favourite The Pretender getting the nod over the others.
For the final song, he asked the crowd if they'd like to hear one from the new album or one from the old album. “That’s the new album f***** then,” he quipped when, predictably, his monster hit Someone You Loved was requested. Lewis gave them what they wanted with an emotionally-charged rendition of his best-known song – and the crowd filed out of the venue with huge smiles on their faces.