Photo by Wendy Anderson / Assistant Lifestyles Editor
Crowds gathered for a sold-out show this past Valentine’s Day at the Cannery Ballroom in Nashville. Phoebe Bridgers’ haunting, somber melodies filled the room and left the audience in awe of California native.
Nashville’s own band, Soccer Mommy, opened up the show and set a mellow vibe for the evening. They played several songs, including some from their new album, “Clean.” Lead singer, Sophie Allison, also performed an alternative sounding version of “I’m on Fire” by the legendary Bruce Springsteen. After over a half-hour long set and informing the crowd that their new album is set to debut March 2, Soccer Mommy left the stage and the crowd readied themselves for the main event.
With anticipation mounting, Bridgers and her band finally walked out on stage and were welcomed with an eruption of applause. After a smile, the singer got straight to business and performed her first song of the evening, “Smoke Signals.” The band went straight into the second song, “Funeral,” and with the sound of the crowd singing along, the room filled with a relaxed vibe. Phoebe then wished the crowd a happy Valentine’s Day and introduced her next song.
“Here’s a love song about someone I don’t give a shit about anymore,” Phoebe said.
There were several more jokes made throughout the night regarding the irony of the artist’s somber songs being played on the day of love.
As the band made their way through the songs on Bridgers’ debut album “Strangers in the Alps,” the crowd began to push closer and closer together. However, the music made it easy to almost completely forget that you were touching hundreds of strangers – almost.
At one point in between songs, the crowd heard “You’re not my fucking mother” come over the speakers. With an eye-roll and laugh from Bridgers, she explained that the drummer, Marshall, had been playing pranks on her throughout the tour with their sample pad.
“Thanks, Mark,” she said sarcastically.
That opened up the perfect opportunity for the drummer to play another sound bite. This time it was from the iconic movie “The Room,” and if you’re familiar with the film you can guess what the audience heard next: “Oh, hi Mark.”
After that brief comedic interruption, there was another brief pause to sing “Happy Birthday” to the guitarist, Anna.
“She fucking rules,” Bridgers said about Anna.
For Bridgers’ last song, she invited her friends and loved ones on stage to sing along. As “Scott Street” began, huge black balloons suddenly dropped into the audience and were passed all around the crowd. As Bridgers started into the final verse, the balloons exploded one by one, releasing confetti into the air and making the venue look like a glittery dream.
After the song ended, the crowd erupted into applause and began chanting, “One more song.”
Bridgers then came back out on stage for an encore with her band. She explained that there were only a few songs that she could count on one hand that made her feel joy, and then dedicated the final song to her “one true Valentine” and sang “If it Makes You Happy” by Sheryl Crow.
As the crowd sang along and danced on top of fallen confetti, the joy that Bridgers explained feeling when she sings this song could be felt by everyone in the room.
Overall, Bridgers delivered a beautifully somber show – all while playing a glittery guitar. Her performance is definitely one to see, and her album, “Stranger in the Alps,” is a must hear.
To contact Music Editor Hayden Goodridge, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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