Dan and Shay Review Bush Hall, London
Hit recording artists Dan & Shay embarked on a UK tour after their fans on social media persuaded them to come. It was simply Dan & his guitar, Shay & his vocals. Not long after the tickets went on sale they sold out! I spoke to the boys before their London gig and they had been totally overwhelmed by the support and were pumped for their final night in the UK.
Now in my mid 30’s, I have to say I felt at least 10 years older than most people in Bush Hall. The boys certainly attract the younger crowd. The venue was absolutely packed as The Pauper Kings took to the stage. I was surprised how many people around me said they had never heard of the Pauper kings. Tim, Henry, Jack & Nick were the perfect fit for Dan & Shay’s support. They sang news songs and told stories of their time recording the new album and they even sang a song that Dan & Shay wrote for them. Seeing the boys is always enjoyable and although many know my feelings that they need to return to a full band with drums, the more acoustic set worked perfectly for the venue and in keeping with Dan & Shay who were playing acoustically themselves. After The Pauper Kings set the chatter around me was of how great they were, so no doubt they have earned a few new fans.
Dan & Shay kicked off their set with ‘What You Do To Me’ and within 30 seconds of the boys being on stage I completely forgot there was only 1 guitar on stage with them. There was so much energy and excitement for an acoustic set. During ‘Stop Drop & Roll’ they seamlessly slipped into R Kelly’s ‘Ignition’ and although out of genre for sure, the crowd’s reaction proved it was a great move.
Early on in the set they sang their latest No.1 hit ‘From the Ground Up’ and I was surprised to hear this song so early in the set however; it was a magical moment when the crowd was almost louder than the amplified boys. During the early part of the set Shay explained how they’d had so much fun during the tour and they were ‘totally gonna geek out’ during the show. They were both visibly moved by the reaction of the crowd and there were quite a few red eyed moments on stage.
As Dan was holding up the instrumental side of the show he figured that he’d make Shay work by making him show off his beat boxing which really was quite impressive. Shay also took a moment to teach the boys in the crowd how to dance! He explained how girls find it easy but guys struggle so he showed off his best moves. I think it may be called Dad dancing at its best! hahaha
Onto ‘Already Ready’ and Shay said he trusted everyone to sing along with this complicated song. I can’t get my tongue around those lyrics myself but people around me had no trouble at all. At this point Shay explained how there were weird mirrors next to him and how he looked like a box troll. He pulled a girl on stage to show her and this really sums up the show; intimate and personal with a real connection and interaction with the crowd. On to a cover now and Shay explained how Ed Sheeran was upset that he couldn’t make the show so they wanted to cover one of his songs to show him what he was missing. Shay’s vocals were astounding on ‘Thinking Out Loud’ (even if he did forget the words ha)
Dan & Shay finished what can only be described as an electric show with their No.1 hit ’19 You & Me’ and took the time to meet everyone after the show.
Every time you go to see an artist your hope is that they live up to their recorded material. On a rare occasion you realised that the record doesn’t do that artist justice at all. Musically, Dan made me forget that he was the only musician on stage; vocally I was totally blown away by Shay’s tone and range. Together the boys are something special. I feel lucky to have seen them in such an intimate venue and I am eager for their return to the UK.