5 years ago in a very small Norwich venue I saw Lewis Watson perform the songs from his very first EP. Fast forward to July 2018 where the YouTube star played one of his very few gigs for this year in Tooting, London.
At 14 years old, like many other teenagers, I was obsessed with Lewis Watson. It was a time before streaming services like Spotify and Deezer were big. They were out there somewhere on the internet but I just didn’t know about them yet. The craze at the time was YouTube and Lewis Watson posted his latest updates there on his page ‘HolyLoowis’.
On the weird chance I was in London this week, I saw on Instagram that Lewis was playing the Tooting Tram and Social. Within the hour I rushed from one side of London to the other arriving only 10 minutes before his set.
I thought this gig would be packed knowing he nearly has 2 million monthly listeners but with tickets at £17 on a Sunday night my first thoughts were far from correct. I didn’t push or get in anyone’s way and somehow managed to stand right in front of him.
The set started with a mix of new songs from his album Midnight and jumped back in time to 2012 and his first EP. The crowd was mostly teenage girls who like me pined over Lewis Watson however I didn’t feel the same connection as I did 5 years ago.
Don’t get me wrong, he’s a sweet guy but even being right at the front of the stage I felt awkward. I was so close to him that my singing out of tune was going to be far too obvious and Lewis Watson didn’t build that stage connection like I had remembered.
Admittedly Lewis is still young and I’m sure there will be a new flood of teenage girls who want to impress Lewis as I once did. However, at the Tooting Tram and Social the crowd seemed no bigger than it was 5 years ago. In fact there were less people but they were shorter than me now.
It didn’t seem as though this was his best performance either. Restarting a song after playing in out of tune and forgetting the lyrics to another. At 14 I would have seen this as cute but I wasn’t as impressed. Maybe I put too much pressure on this gig, thinking it would be the same as it once was or even better now I paid for the ticket out of my own money and not my Mum’s purse or maybe nothing has changed for Lewis Watson.
I waited outside hoping to speak to him after the gig like he has done so many times before but after singing his final song he was gone like a flash. His gig wasn’t personal, fun or even emotional. I miss the way his music once made me feel, now it’s a distant memory.
(SORRY THIS IS SO ANGSTY)
Peace and love,