Photo by Josh Aberman
On the evening of 22nd January, Hackney’s ‘Paper Dress Vintage’ witnessed a sequence of soulful performances by an exceptional lineup—Enesi, Zitah, and the talk of the night: Arieleno. The event was a collaboration orchestrated by ‘Gotobeat,’ a community of music lovers who organise a range of concerts, after-parties, and meet-and-greets in quirky venues which welcome their independent artists. A vintage shop by the day and bar by night, Paper Dress Vintage was covered with curated pieces which gave the venue a personal touch, as the artists unfolded their equally intimate sets.
The first act of the night was by Enesi, a South London singer-songwriter, who opened the show with a passionate cover of Justin Bieber’s ‘As I Am,’ setting the mood for a night of honest conversations and emotions. Known for making feel-good songs that still leave his listeners with something to think about, Enesi served his audience with splendid vocals and performances of some of his original tracks: ‘Do You Want Me’ and ‘Take You There,’ both of which had the crowd grooving.
The second act was Zitah, an artist with piercing confidence and comforting charm. Opening the stage with Jasmine Sullivan’s ‘Lost One’ and following it by an awe-inspiring cover of Gnarls Barkley’s ‘Crazy,’ Zitah absolutely seized the thirty minutes she performed for. Her cover of ‘Crazy’ was so fresh that she made the song all hers. The cherry on top was her performance of her original songs, ‘Come Over’ and ‘Mr. Maybe.’ Both of the songs were soft, but the robustness of her vocals, her supporting band, and their instruments maintained the energy in the room.
The last act and the headlining artist of the night was Arieleno. From the minute he stepped onto the stage to the minute he stepped down, he had all of us captivated. His set included his originals: ‘Miles Away,’ ‘Difficult,’ and ‘I Just Wanna Know,’ as well as a teaser of his new R&B EP, which he is releasing soon. Arieleno closed the night with his song ‘At Night (Zumbe),’ leaving all of us looking forward to more in the future.
The atmosphere felt very inclusive, whether it was an audience member’s first gig or one of many, everyone felt like a part of a community. This is what Gotobeat is aiming for: to create a community of live music lovers who support independent artists and venues. Their membership programme gives free access to any events of your choice. For just £15.99 a month, you get access to over five gigs each month. To check out Gotobeat's membership programme and the other shows that they have on offer, make sure to visit their website.
Photos by Josh Aberman
Edited by Talia Andrea, Deputy Music Editor, and Josh Aberman, Music Editor