Julia Michaels made a stop at Elevation at The Intersection in Grand Rapids, Michigan on April 24th on her Inner Monologue Tour. This is how I felt about it, and why I think you should attend one of her shows if you have the chance.
Sidenote: Firstly, my admiration for the songstress really stems for her being a respected songwriter in the music industry. She's written for Bieber, Selena Gomez, Ed Sheeran, Gwen Stefani, Britney Spears-- the list is honestly ridiculously long. Then having the guts to break free of only being known as a songwriter to releasing solo projects like "Nervous System" and "Inner Monologue Part 1," someone give this girl a grammy.
Julia Michaels is an example of the woman we need in the music industry. She doesn't shy away from singing about embracing her sexuality to openly talking about her anxiety and depression and being a boss ass business woman too.
She opened the concert with the song, "Pink," from her first EP. I could feel the energy radiating off the stage from the back of the room by the sound board. The entire audience was echoing the lyrics and jumping around to the heavy guitar after the chorus.
There's no innuendos, it's exactly what you think Believe me when I tell you that he loves the color pink
I think my favorite part of Michaels' songwriting is that she says exactly what she's feeling without trying to write in code or metaphors. Whether you knew the song or not, she made sure you felt it.
She made the audience repeat, "This is a what? A safe space." It was the small things throughout the night that showed her genuineness. Even better, she made sure you knew how much she appreciated you. She took the time to take pieces of paper young fans were passing to her and said she reads every single one. What that would have meant to me as a young teenager-- the words don't exist.
Her favorite song she told the audience to sing live is "Happy." An anthem about just wanting to "be fucking happy." Relatable, right? She had the audience scream the verses loud and proud.
And sometimes I think I kill relationships for art I start up all this shit to watch 'em fall apart I pay my bills with it, I watch 'em fall apart Then pay the price for it, I watch 'em fall apart, but
Then mid-performance, she has her crew bring a platform in the middle of the audience so she can have a better view and chance to connect with the back of the room while singing a cute sonnet-like song, "Apple."
One of the more genuine moments was when she sang her acoustic hit, "Anxiety." The lyrics are pretty funny to someone who doesn't struggle with anxiety and depression, but if you do, you're kind of like holy shit, is she reading my mind? She opened up earlier in the show saying one of the things she's noticed that really calms her anxiety down is when people sing with her, and I think she felt pretty calm in the moment.
My friends, they wanna take me to the movies I tell 'em to fuck off, I'm holding hands with my depression And right when I think I've overcome it Anxiety starts kicking in to teach that shit a lesson Oh, I try my best just to be social I make all these plans with friends and hope they call and cancel Then I overthink about the things I’m missing Now I'm wishing I was with 'em
Her energy never faulted the whole performance. In between her little giggles, dimpled smiles and bopping around, I've never felt so enamored before.
Michaels had two encores. The first was made up of her duet with Niall Horan, "What A Time," and the song that really gave her her start, "Issues." But it wasn't until the second encore, where it was just her and a little piano singing "Don't Wanna Think," that I really felt star-struck.
I hope you get the chance to see her in an intimate setting before she starts headlining stadiums. If her performance was enchanting enough to sway me to purchase $20 socks from her merch table, I promise you too will walk away feeling captivated by Julia Michaels.
She only has a few dates left of her spring Inner Monologue Tour in between opening for P!nk's Beautiful Trauma Tour, but she just announced a fall tour. See if she's coming to a city near you.