The crowd were pushed right up against the barrier towards the front of the venue. The stage was in front of them, a keyboard player, guitarists and a drummer were poised ready.
Where was Louis Berry?
We had been waiting a while and the anticipation was building.
Suddenly he sprang to the stage with a huge smile on his face, guitar in hand and began, his vibrant and dynamic stage presence, stunning the audience in to a roar of celebration.
“Louis, Come on Louis” they chanted.
Louis’s strong personality was made known almost immediately, he began to sing a personal favourite of mine Nicole.
I think his performance complimented his rock and roll character.
His band were incredible there was one guy with a huge beard, he looked like a rock star.
Berry and his band all looked as if they were having a party on stage, I loved the fact that the music wasn’t just boring and a cliche it was original and upbeat and I’ve not seen a crowd in an intimate venue such as the Guild Hall LiVe music venue be so loud and get up on one another’s shoulders before.
You could see the pure joy in people’s faces in the setting, so many people were filming with their phones and most of them were drinking Red Stripe.
“This f*cking mic stand’s falling over, what’s going on?”
He then sang 45 which was amazing, but the song that really caught my attention was Laurie.
“This next song is called Laurie if you know it sing it with me”
He changed to an acoustic guitar and well it was such a beautiful ambient song.
The reaction from the crowd was astonishing, I left backstage to go in to the bundle of people and see the responses of the audience.
I just knew that they were waiting for him to sing restless, one of the slower songs.
“As an artist it’s easy to just play songs you can dance to, everyone wants to dance at a gig but music is art.”
He then played a song I hadn’t heard of before, I think he was free styling his own song which was awesome!
It was just such an interesting performance, I loved the fact he just looked like he was enjoying it so much.
It was so much better to have the ratio of musicality to performance balanced. I don’t feel that his performance was to mask his music it simply complimented it and it felt genuine.
It was simply him and his band having fun through a shared passion for music.
I think despite being a little outspoken with swearing Louis does have a brilliant drive and some sensible words for his fans.
“I started writing these songs , a rock and roll kind of sound and people started saying it wasn’t my kind of sound but then I got played on radio one.”
I think he was trying to get across the point that no matter what people say you shouldn’t give up and I think that’s a great mentality to have.
“You’re going to know this next one”
He began singing 25 Reasons and the crowd erupted.
The guitar solo at the start was incredible and was played by the man featured above, who was then introduced by Berry
” Let me introduce you to this fella this is the guy I’ve played with since the beginning and he’s very dear to me.”
I just found that every one of his songs was perfectly executed and his ability to travel through all the different octaves was amazing, although he has a certain amount of gruffness in his voice it worked really well and sounded quirky.
The slowest paced song Restless as mentioned before and waited on by the audience.
The moment he began singing couples were holding hands, phones were in the air people were jumping up and down and clapping and raw emotion was filling the venue.
The crowd were copying Louis’s signature point and jumping and cheering.
“f*cking sick!” Louis looked ecstatic and his keyboard player was even playing a tambourine.
I caught up with Louis and asked him
What is your biggest fear?
“Failure” It appears Berry doesn’t want to get knocked down which could explain his drive and on going passion for what he does.
Do you have any dangerous hobbies?
“MMA” for those who don’t know that’s Mixed Martial Arts, Louis finds it really enjoyable.
Who influences you musically?
” I don’t have a person as a musical influence, where I grew up influenced me and inspired me to make music.”
I was not expecting him to be as welcoming as he was considering it was already half 11 at night and he’d just done a gig. He gave me a hug and talked to me with a smile on his face which I thought was so genuine and nice.
To sum it up I’ve never seen so many Red Stripes backstage in all my life and it’s a rare sight to see such a range of ages appreciating the same music.
The contrast between the acoustic and electric guitar left me with goosebumps and that’s not an exaggeration, it’s unreal to see someone who can pick up both like it’s nothing and get a decent sound quality out of them.
I didn’t listen to him that much but now I think he’s grown on me and despite his potty mouth Louis Berry’s singing voice and attitude off stage makes up for it.
He’s actually a very nice person that has a lot of time for his fans and loves music and views it as art, as for The Guild Hall LiVe venue good luck cleaning up all those plastic cups and cans.