Dan Reed is one of those rare musicians who’s achieved success in a band (as the charismatic lead vocalist of Dan Reed Network, he’s sold millions of albums and toured with the Rolling Stones) and as a solo artist. The American rocker recently released his fourth solo album entitled Confessions and hit the road on his European Solo Tour, which kicked off last Thursday in one of the most beautiful and intimate places London has to offer, St Pancras Old Church.
Those who’ve followed Dan Reed’s solo career know about his phenomenal songwriting and his ability to change a room full of individuals into a single, united being – almost as if he’s cast a transformation spell from a classic fable. It’s been almost three decades since Dan Reed Network entered the spotlight for the very first time and in that time the Portland native has mastered the art of keeping an audience thrilled. Those in attendance at the opening show would vouch for that, and those only familiar with his band’s work were in for a real treat.
Reed’s warm, deep voice and acoustic guitar filled the Old Church, turning the evening into an almost mystical experience. Not only did fans love the mix of old and new tunes, blended with personal stories and anecdotes – by taking song requests, Dan invited the audience to become a creative part of his performance, shaping the night’s unique set that opened the set with a stunning cover of James Taylor’s Fire and Rain.
When you’re an artist with Dan’s talent and skill, you can do things your own way. So, despite the show being part of the Confessions Tour, he decided to go through his entire career rather than promoting the latest album. Smile, A Piece Of Home, and Day One (the one song accompanied by a backing track) were warmly welcomed by the audience but the only tracks performed from the Confessions LP.
The truth is, the concert was more of a gift to the fans than part of a promo tour. It was a night of storytelling through words and music. Promised Land and Jerusalem Sky brought a bit of politics and general human values, as Dan questioned the nature of tolerance, religion, and friendship, concluding that the differences making us unique should never be used as a reason to fight.
Fan-requested What Dreams Come True brought back the memories of those we lost over the last few years. Remembering Prince, Lemmy, and Bowie, Dan got emotional as he delivered a soul-touching, emotional version of the 2015 Transmission single.
Some might say there’s nothing unusual about a musician playing an intimate venue and connecting with the audience. But I still think it’s a kind of magic when one person lets you explore his own thoughts, dreams, hopes, and fears through the power of music.
The European and UK Solo Tour will roll through the continent until mid-November, and I strongly recommend you go and dive into Dan’s music. It might be a life-changing experience.
Dan Reed 2017 UK and European tour dates:
Sep 14: London St. Pancras Old Church, UK
Sep 15: Manchester Sacred Trinity Church Salford, UK
Sep 16: Newcastle Cluny 2, UK
Sep 17: Nottingham Greyhound Beeston, UK
Sep 22: Helsingborg The Tivoli, Sweden
Sep 23: Trollhattan Backstage Rock Bar, Sweden
Oct 06: Bath Chapel Arts Centre, UK
Oct 07: Ebbw Vale EVI, UK
Oct 13: Falun Kopparhatten, Sweden
Oct 14: Alingsas MX Rock Bar, Sweden
Oct 20: Dublin Whelan’s, Ireland
Oct 21: Belfast Diamond Rock Club, UK
Nov 11: Trubbach Jonny’s Lion Cave, Switzerland
Dan Reed live @ St Pancras Old Church, London
14th Seprember 2017
Live review and photography by Edyta K