REVIEW: Rising artist Daniel Caesar performs intimate concert

Daniel Caesar, a 21-year-old singer-songwriter, enchanted an intimate audience Monday night at The Observatory in Santa Ana.

Caesar, an impeccable vocalist, started singing at a young age and uses narratives in his personal life to create eloquent lyrics about love, loss, faith and fortitude. He does not label his music under one genre, but rather takes inspiration from R&B, soul, rock and gospel.

At The Observatory, the crowd of about 150 people roared as he arrived on stage, surrounded by bright white lights flooding the floor. With a guitar in his hand, he began singing “Violet,” a song from his album Pilgrim’s Paradise, which was released in 2015.

Caesar’s performance of “Japanese Denim,” one of his most popular songs had the crowd singing along to the lyrics, “My blue jeans will last me all my life, so should we / I’m spending all this time,” followed by a grand crescendo over, “You don’t even know me, I’m hanging from a tree.” The intimacy of the venue allowed for only a limited number of Caesar fans to enjoy the show, which was apparent in the number of people in the audience singing along to every song.

Though he was never classically trained in vocals, Caesar’s falsetto and harmonies were immaculate, allowing audiences to hear the depth in his lyrics.

Growing up attending church with his family, Caesar was outspoken in his loss of faith in “Death and Taxes,” with lyrics such as, “Surely my sins have found me out, God rest my soul, but show me out / I live in a real world, I’ve lost my faith.” During the performance, Caesar pulled out his guitar as the white spotlight shined on him and confidently sang, “Only two things in this life that are sure, of that I’m sure, death and taxes.” Caesar’s upbeat number, “Paradise,” shared similar themes, as the audience danced and sang along: “Picking fights with my pops, he asked forgiveness a lot / But I don’t need God’s forgiveness, can I get me a witness.”

He ended the concert with his most popular song  “Get You.” This song speaks about being grateful for true love: “Kingdoms have fallen, angels be calling. None of that could ever make me leave / Every time I look into your eyes I see it, you’re all I need.”

Though Caesar has been producing successful music for years, he has recently risen to international recognition, touring for the first time in the United States in November 2016. His concert in Santa Ana was his last in January, following a sold-out concert in Los Angeles earlier that week.

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