A few years ago, the people of NamNation were excited to hear that Eric Nam would be setting off on a U.S. tour. Then a blizzard hit the Northeast, the tour was subsequently cancelled and there was no word of a reschedule date. After waiting for over two years, fans were elated to hear that Eric Nam announced a short solo tour stopping in New York City and his hometown Atlanta, Georgia. Fans rushed out to get their hands on tickets, selling out both venues prompting a venue change in New York and additional date in Atlanta to account for the overwhelming demand. On Aug. 8, with their homemade banners and signs in tow, bright and cheery fans flocked over to Irving Plaza to await Eric Nam’s first ever solo concert.
The show opened up with Alec Benjamin taking center stage with just his guitar. The young singer-songwriter sang a short set of original songs and despite his constant mention of being nervous, he was able to capture the attention and support of the audience though his story telling and sweet voice that went along with easy melodies.
Up next was the man of the hour Eric Nam, who came out on the stage to Heaven’s Door; the title track off of his debt mini-album Cloud 9. The show began bright and upbeat as everyone was excited and sang along to all of the lyrics. After the song Interview, Eric took the time to greet the audience and express his awe and gratitude towards the sold out venue. After his introduction he went straight into the sweet song You, Who? and continued on to Love Song which was filled enough cute poses and fanfare to satisfy any fan. The set slowed down or got “depressed real quick” as Eric put it, with No Comment and I’m OK. And to the delight of the concert goers, he also sang an English cover of Big Bang member Taeyang’s song Eyes, Nose, Lips. After getting all of his “obligatory ballads out of the way”, Eric took a quick second to sing a fan happy birthday with everyone else in the audience before continuing to a crowd favorite Ooh Ooh. Being one of the very few songs with actual choreography, Eric Nam was joined on stage with a few back up dancers as the audience sang and cheered along to the groovy upbeat song. Idea of you, a dance song with a slow hook that Nam collaborated with DJ/producer ARTY was up next followed by a new, not yet released song called Like You. The new song is a smooth pop song and with Eric Nam’s raspy whispering vocals (thanks in part to having tonsillitis), created that sort of sexy vibe that much of his newer music has. Continuing with on with the same vibe was Cave Me In, another collaboration this time with Gallant and Epik High's Tablo. Before the end of the set Eric mentioned how many of his new song have been in English for his international fans. Being that he is originally from Atlanta Georgia, trying to break into the US market is a great feat that he is steadily working his way towards. On top of playing a new song that is to be released, Eric announced that he may have a new album coming out in October of this year as well as a special EP that is due to be out soon for his US fans. The set ended with the light and happy Good For You and the more sensual yet upbeat song Body, a song by Timbaland.
Leaving the audience on a high note, Eric Nam returned to the stage after an extremely brief intermission for an encore. He began with a short acapella of Can’t Stop The Rain upon request from the audience and then started Into you, a summer dance song he did with KOLAJ last year. The last song of the night was Can't Help Myself, a bright pop song with a summer feel that got everyone dancing and singing along until the end of the show.
Some artists may seem awkward being up on a stage alone with nothing but the backing music track, but Eric Nam was able to deliver a completely satisfying concert that was beyond anybody’s expectations. With his witty conversations and light-hearted personality, Eric Nam is truly genuine when connecting with the audience on a personal level allowing everyone to have a sense of comradery and overall enjoyable experience. It was like hanging out with your best friend who just happened to be a brilliant singer and just a down right great person. Hopefully with his ventures into the U.S. music scene, Eric Nam will be on his way to becoming a household name.
Eyes, Nose, Lips (English cover)
Idea Of You
Cave Me In
Good For You
Can’t Help Myself
Special Thanks to Eric Nam, Eddie Nam, and CJ E&M.