Johnny Stimson At Live At Aloft Hotels Music Festival

Johnny Stimson At Live At Aloft Hotels Music Festival

  • Johnny Stimson
    Photo: The Recording Academy

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By Brent Burns

Aloft Hotels put emerging artists in the spotlight on Oct. 19–20 during the inaugural Live at Aloft Hotels: 50 Days of Music festival at the hotel's downtown Dallas location.

Supported by opening act Kao Ho & Bean, hometown favorite Johnny Stimson kicked off the two-day celebration with an intimate headlining set. Stimson delivered seven solid songs, including his popular ukulele-driven "Penny," with a sound as fresh as his megawatt smile.

Giving Stimson a guitar and a microphone is like watching your best friend sing songs you already know, but with words that describe Stimson's deeply personal experiences. Having just completed a tour across the Gulf Coast states, Stimson shared, "The tour has been incredible. I am just so happy to be playing music for people every day. But there's really nothing like coming home, and I am really happy to be playing for my hometown crowd."

As he continued through his set, an onstage screen reflected visuals of fans live-tweeting their praise for the singer. At one point, Stimson invited his longtime bandmate Matt Puckett onstage to play fiddle during "Someone I Used To Know." But it was when he played a new song, "Here We Go Again," that he brought the house down as he danced with his guitar and had the crowd singing along to a hook they just learned.

Stimson captured the audience's heart with performances of "A Million Years," his latest single, and the intimate ballad "New Shoes." His songs are an elegant blend of detail and naked romanticism, with the theatrical yet sincere vulnerability of great pop. As his set continued with a closing performance of the clap-along tune "Hello Yellow," an intense energy emanated from the crowd, turning the night into a boisterous coronation of sorts.

The Live at Aloft Hotels festival featured additional performances by blues guitarist and singer/songwriter Martin Harley, British rock/pop collective the Dunwells and edgy indie chanteuse Meiko.

Set List
"New Shoes"
"A Million Years"
"Only One"
"Someone I Used To Know"
"Here We Go Again"
"Hello Yellow"

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