Riding 'Shotgun' all the way to Wembley
Yasmin Cowan
17:14 17th November 2018

George Ezra takes to the stage with his band in tow, grinning from ear to ear in classic Ezra style. However, his perpetual schoolboy smile was quickly wiped from his face and replaced with the most solemn of looks, as he strums the first Nashville flavoured chords of ‘Saviour’. Upon finishing, Ezra greets the crowd with the obligatory, “Hello Wembley” - a phrase that any musician could only dream of uttering. The look on his face is that of sheer delight and disbelief as he is met by the roar of a sold-out venue, full of fans screaming back at him in adulation. Everyone laps it up as he enlightens the crowd on how his music would be full of dreams and escapism from this drab reality. Before moving onto the next song, he begins what would be the start of a series of various long-winded stories – the kind of pointless, but entertaining stories typically told by a small child. 

Despite his boyish giddiness and endearingly silly anecdotes, there is an air of maturity about his performance. Although his songs are simple with a light-hearted subject matter, such as inter-railing or living in Air BnBs with strangers, his live set adds a new level of complexity and depth to his chart-topping tunes. The epic choruses mixed with brassy fanfares and a whistle-blowing carnival generate a party atmosphere throughout the venue. Everyone is up, hip-shaking and shimmying to the rockabilly rhythm. Confetti canons ablaze, it all culminates in a spirited rendition of the song of the summer, ‘Shotgun’. 

George Ezra’s optimistic baritone is arguably one of the most loveable voices in music. Like a spoonful of sugar, his music goes down easily, leaving you with a pleasant taste. He doesn’t try too hard and he’s not particularly cool by any stretch of the imagination, which only adds to his naff allure. His ‘dweeby’ charm and lack of cynicism is what makes him so enchanting to the masses. Ezra captures the hearts of many with his unwavering ability to have crowds beaming with joy. Whilst he is not the most ground-breaking artist around, his shows are undeniably enjoyable and guarantee an uplifting experience. The whole night feels like a cross between some gauche stand-up comedy show and a chipper cheese-filled singalong with family and friends. Needless to say, everyone leaves the arena feeling rather warm and fuzzy inside, chirping along to his infectious pop’n’roll hits.

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Photo: Katie Willoughby