Last Thursday found San Francisco's The Rickshaw Stop completely packed and absolutely teeming with energy. The lady, the new legend Jessie Ware, was about to perform, and the crowd was spastic with its bountiful excitement. There were no lasers. There were no larger-than-god light pillars. Jessie took the stage with her three-piece band, and there were simply musicians and music, sans accouterments and distractions.
Beginning with "Devotion," Ware instantly set high expectations for the evening. Singing through the next hour-plus with favorites such as "No To Love," "Wildest Moments," "110%," and "Sweet Talk," Ware showed the crowd what true artistry is. It's incredible that one person should have all of the assets Ware embodies wrapped up into one human package, but there she stood. An astounding amount of enigmatic beauty shone through each song with her personable stage presence, audience engagement, and innocently strong pipes.
The definite highlight of the evening was her acoustic rendition of "What You Won't Do For Love." With just Jessie's vocals backed by guitar, it is not possible put into words how touching and perfect this goosebump-abound moment was.
2013 has good things in store for this artist. With her first US tour under her belt, she's gearing up for Coachella and Primavera, among other shows in the UK and Australia. Her ability to bridge soul, electronic, pop, funk, and indie all in one breath is a rarity, and an experience highly recommended for one and all.