Call it a night reminiscent of old school meets new school.
On Friday, March 11 at The Hotel Café singer Major hosted his annual birthday celebration showcasing songs from his up-and-coming EP.
“I feel so good,” Major said to the crowd when he got on stage. Wearing a black fedora, white tuxedo shirt and black pants the singer had an old school vibe that commanded the crowd. The five-piece band and single back-up vocalist set up the atmosphere for something evocative of the 1950s with a ‘10s twist.
Performing songs “My Future” and the popular “Hit The Road,” Major’s vocal sound reminded me of Nat King Cole and a bit of Sam Cooke. It was an all around experience for a music lover like me—plus the crowd enjoyed it. At any given moment I could see people in the crowd swaying—with their hands up—screaming “sing Major!” as he performed.
The set of six songs had lovely moments and serious breaks where he even discussed social issues that occurred earlier in the day.
“Y’all heard about Chicago right?” Major asked the crowd. He was referring to the protests that happened earlier that day which led to the cancellation of Republican front-runner Donald Trump’s Chicago rally. “It’s a whole lot going on in the world, but you know what we’re going to be alright,” he said right before going into his remix of Kendrick Lamar’s “Alright”. During the song, he talked about encouraging words his stepfather gave him about his career.
His song “Why I love you” tipped the scales to higher dimensions for me and I instantly fell into lyric euphoria. While handing out red roses to the ladies of the crowd, one to which I received, I couldn’t help but realize the vocal arrangement. Major easily switched in and out of singing in his full voice to the softness of his strong falsetto range. The song interpretively gave the listener a jump-start to daydream each word being sung.
He closed the night with his engaging song “Keep On,” which originally features singer Kevin McCall. If Major’s birthday celebration is a peek into what is to come, I’m excited to see the finished product. The EP is scheduled to release later this year.
Major, also known as Major. Johnson Finley, is an artist under music group BOE Global founded by music producer Harmony Samuels. To keep up with Major check him out on Twitter and Instagram @NowthatsMajor.