Gavin Degraw In Concert: Totally DegrAwesome

A simple stage, with minimal instruments, banners, and people is what makes this concert so special. Much of this ambiance is provided by the venue, a relatively new space in Birmingham, Alabama called Iron City. It’s a sold-out, standing-room-only concert, and the energy is laid back (much like the artists set to perform).

It will come at no surprise to anyone who knows me that I love Gavin Degraw. In fact, the day he followed me on Twitter was a highlight of my life, so when a friend called to tell me he was coming to Birmingham I knew I had to go, and it was worth it. I did try and get him to tweet me so I could interview him, but he’s a pretty busy guy and unfortunately all you have is my opinions from the night. Let me take this as an opportunity to apologize to anyone who was standing around me at the concert, I cannot be held responsible for my dancing, singing, or screaming.

Iron City is a small venue that holds maybe 2,000 people, but it was packed and everyone there was excited and ready to hear their favorite songs by awesome artists. The only tickets offered were general admission and VIP, which came with seating and swag. It was a homey venue with a restaurant and bar, and it made us feel closer to the artists we came to hear. There was no lack of screaming fans though, and by the end of the night I was hoarse from yelling and singing. I wasn’t the only one.

Rozzie Crane at Iron City

For his U.S. tour, Gavin has two opening acts. First was a singer I’d never heard of from Los Angeles named Rozzi Crane. She is signed to Adam Levine’s record label, and she had an incredible voice. She sang original songs along with some Beyoncé. Her song titles are hilarious and her voice is full of soul and heart. I will definitely have to check out her album when it comes out.

Parachute’s Will Anderson

Next was Parachute, and if you’ve never heard of them you need to look them up. Front man, Will Anderson, knows how to work a crowd: He does the Miley tongue thing and somehow makes it look sexy instead of gross. The audience didn’t just sing along with the band—we had our own parts, which it was fun and made us feel like we were part of the concert. After Parachute’s set I will definitely have to look for more saxophone solos, because their musician was so much fun.

Then it was time for Gavin, and he came out with a splash…of noise. He sang all his hits, both new and old, and if I didn’t know his catalogue so well, I would have thought that he didn’t have any left to sing. Some of my favorites were, “Chariot,” “We Belong Together,” “Follow Through,” “Make A Move,” “Soldier,” and my favorite “I Don’t Want To Be.” With every new song played the crowd got more and more excited. No one in the room could help singing along, and as “I Don’t Wanna Be” played I felt like I was in an episode of “One Tree Hill.” Gavin isn’t afraid to make fun of himself, and his dancing proves it (unless that’s really how he dances in which case I’m sorry), and seemed genuinely thankful to everyone who came to see him. As with any live show there is a fear that maybe your favorite artist isn’t as good in real life, without the sound mixers and complicated instrumentals, but Gavin (as well as Parachute and Rozzie Crane) did not disappoint. My ticket may have not cost very much, but I would pay much more to see any of them in concert again.

Gavin Degraw singing “Follow Through”
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