After three weeks of heavy touring across the country, Phillip Phillips finally made his way to Vancouver, BC last Friday to play the last show of his first ever Canadian tour. But before his highly anticipated show at Rogers Arena, Phillip took the time to do a very special Intimate and Interactive show, sponsored by Shore 104.3 FM. Only 50 fans were allowed to attend the event, and you had to win your way in. I’m happy to say, I was one of those winners!
The event took place at the beautiful lounge inside the lobby of the Pacific Rim Hotel in downtown Vancouver. There was a small lineup to enter and everybody was assigned a numbered wristband. Despite not being the first in line, I could not believe it when we got seated right in front of the chairs were Phillip and his guitarist Errol Cooney would play!
At 1:30 pm sharp Phillip and Errol came out to big cheers from the contest winners. They wasted no time, and after a brief intro jumped right into “Man On The Moon.” If you have ever seen video of these acoustic performances, you know what an unbelievable treat it was to see Errol and Phillip just jam out on that intense extended ending and then do it all over again on “Where We Came From.”
The 50-minute event was a combination performance and Q&A, and the audience was able to submit the questions they wanted to ask. Despite Phillip’s famous nerves, it was great to see that he has become a relaxed and natural storyteller, and he made us laugh more than once with his stories. He told us a funny one about the time his dad was concerned about his grades. He told him he needed to get better or he would sell all Phillip’s belongings at the family’s pawn shop. Sure enough, next semester when Phillip’s grades didn’t improve, he came home to find out that everything in his room was gone. “Did he sell the stuff?” “No, he didn’t sell it, but he scared me!”
Phillip also talked about the new album, Behind The Light, whose May 19 release date and title were announced only hours before Friday’s event. He joked saying that he hopes people will like it, but still if they don’t, that he hopes people will just “buy it, and buy it again!” He also said that the album will be “more mature,” musically “more technical” and “heavier overall,” and that he hopes it’s “cooler than the first one.”
Throughout the Q&A, it was clear that despite not taking himself very seriously (he is very humble and funny), Phillip takes the music and the creative process very seriously, talking about how much he has learned through the recording of his two albums and about how he wants his music to truly represent him always. Amazingly, my question was picked during the Q&A, but I was so excited they had chosen it, that I think I failed to capture his whole answer. I asked about what other influences he has besides other musicians, such as stories from movies or TV shows and books. He said that he does get inspired by movies and shows (and talked about his favorite TV shows The Walking Dead and Breaking Bad) which may result in some darker or stranger music that may not necessarily make it to the album, but that he may play live.
Phillip’s singing was as intense and soulful as I had imagined it would be, his playing incredibly skillful and graceful at the same time. And Errol Cooney is just an unbelievable guitar player, providing the perfect support and solos to Phillip’s ambitious arrangements and ideas.
It was, without question, the most perfect, incredible performance and event. Not many people get the chance to see a musician they admire in an intimate setting like this, so I’m thankful to Shore 104.3 FM for putting together this very special event and for Phillip for taking the time to do it. It’s a beautiful memory that I will cherish forever.
Check out the set list and exclusive video and photos from the event below!
Man On The Moon
Where We Came From
Gone Gone Gone
Photos/Video by Sebastian Lavigna