Concert Review: Hunter Hayes performs at Webster Hall in New York
By: Markos Papadatos
Atlantic Nashville recording artist Hunter Hayes played at New York City’s Webster Hall on June 18 as part of an ‘MTV Artist to Watch Live’ showcase.
The country singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist opened his set with “A Thing About You,” a new tune from his “Encore” CD.
“It is so good to see all of you guys tonight,” Hunter stated.
It was followed by “Can’t Say Love” and the optimistic “Better Than This,” which is about chasing crazy dreams.
“Thank you. I am a little speechless. We are filling up balconies now,” he said referring to the sold-out venue. “This is awesome. Happy ‘Encore’ day! You don’t know how special it is to spend this evening with you. I want you to feel at home so sing, dance and jump up and down.”
He immediately broke into his debut single “Storm Warning” and it was followed by the poignant ballad “Rainy Season,” where he showcased his dynamic range and falsetto.
Hunter noted that he and his band have been getting a lot of requests for “If You Told Me To” and they decided to play a re-arranged acoustic version of the tune, which was a real treat.
He had the audience clapping along to the up-tempo “Everybody Got’s Somebody But Me” and he played electric guitar on “Somebody’s Heartbreak”; subsequently, he gave a vivid and explosive performance of another new tune, “Light Me Up,” where the audience could recall a young Garth Brooks.
“Are you having fun New York City?” he asked. “Are you feeling the love?”
He continued with the spitfire, up-tempo tune “More Than I Should,” as well as another new track, “In a Song,” as the stage was graced in blue and green flashing lights.
Hunter commenced “Faith to Fall Back On” a-capella and delivered a controlled rendition; moreover, he noted his excitement of having his own headlining tour and he thanked his band, team and crew for making it all possible for him, as well as Country Music Television (CMT), MTV and Pepsi, among others.
In “What You Gonna Do,” Ashley Monroe returned to the stage with her honey-rich voice and joined Hunter on this stunning duet, which was well-received.
“Where We Left Off” was a tender song that Hunter played on piano and he dedicated it to the men and women that are serving in the United States military.
While at the piano, he played another song that was familiar to the crowd: his first chart-topping single, “Wanted.” It was met with a raucous applause and he complimented the audience for sounding “beautiful” on it as they sang along with him.
He closed his set with one of his all-time favorite songs “Loves Makes Me” and he encouraged New York City to “get crazy” on his newest radio single “I Want Crazy.”
If 18 songs on his setlist were not enough, Hunter Hayes returned for an encore, where he sang a rendition of Maroon 5’s smash hit “This Love.”
Hunter went on to wish the crowd a “good night” and he thanked his fans immensely and shook as many hands as he possibly could, prior to leaving the stage.
Hunter Hayes was a mini-tower of vocal power at New York’s Webster Hall. He proved to be a charismatic artist that MTV and the world ought to watch since he can do it all: sing well, write songs, play instruments and simultaneously give his fans a high-energy show and a truly unforgettable concert experience. He showcased a humble and genuine personality throughout the evening and he treated his fans as if they were friends and family members. Overall, Hunter garnered an A+ for tonight’s live performance.
Photo Credit: Warner Music Nashville