Since seeing Mahalia perform 6+ months ago, she has been just as busy as I expected. And it was apparent from the huge contrast between the small personable gig she had at Hoxton Square Bar back in November 2017 and the huge crowd she garnered at SCALA in Kings Cross this month.
I was anxious that with the huge audience development as an established artist, she would struggle to keep her authentic sound and persona that we love so much, but she remained true to herself, playing on her acoustic guitar and sharing the intimate stories behind her songs. You could see the passion for what she does on stage every time she smiled when she heard the crowd singing along to her lyrics. And it was a real treat hearing her perform a brand new unreleased song ‘Water’ alongside featuring artist Kojey Radical, which will be released this Friday.
Performing on her 20th birthday meant that her friends and family came out on stage to dance with her as the crowd screamed out her happy birthday song. Her younger brother Zayn joined her for an amazing spoken word piece later during the set, so it was definitely a ‘family affair’.
Mahalia shared with us a range of songs from her older tracks to some newer releases, as well as a mix of ‘Cranes in the Sky’ and SZA’s ‘Weekend’ to her song ‘Catch me when I fall’, featuring Joel Baker who is an artist I will definitely be checking out.
I’ve yet to hear a song of hers I dislike & even with the evolution of her performances and music she still has that authentic sound that had us hooked from the beginning and genuine energy on stage that makes you want to engage with her. The show ended in a speech from her, which highlighted how far she really has come from when she signed at only 14 and how hard she has worked to get there. She even said that she had thought to herself, ‘I’m never gonna perform at this venue [SCALA]’ and has gained crazy amounts of confidence in herself. Her passion for music means that she was able to give this incredible performance which was a definite standout.
Mahalia is becoming a huge star and judging by her song ‘Sober’ being covered in a Paris bar just days after it was released, I can honestly say that it’s happening very quickly.
Keep an eye out for her song with Kojey Radical – ‘Water’ being released on Friday 11th May.
Image sourced: @mahalia via Instagram