Having had considerable success as a member of the now-defunct British boy-band The Wanted, Nathan Sykes has recently launched his solo career and, to mark the release of debut single “Kiss Me Quick," he took to the internet to delight fans around the world with the first ever #SkyesSecretShow.
In the weeks leading up to the event, which was scheduled to begin at 6.45 pm UK time this evening, though actually didn’t start until 7 pm (he was making a brew), Nathan offered fans the chance to join in on the stream by having them retweet certain Twitter messages, Snapchat him screenshots, and send him Spotify playlists.
He begins the evening by greeting the few in the venue before him with a polite “Hello," prior to the host for the show, whose name is never mentioned, asking him first and foremost what made him decide to do a show like this. With a grin and a sip of his tea, he looks out at those before him and says:
“Everyone’s been so supportive so really it’s a way of saying thank you.”
His first performance, “More Than You’ll Ever Know,” comes across as surprisingly soulful, especially considering Nathan is from Gloucester, but despite how good it is, the audience respond with little more than polite applause, which is disappointing.
The first interaction with his audience comes in the form of a young girl in the front row, who asks if he’d mind being in a Snapchat video. With almost teenage excitement, he happily agrees and invites the girl on stage to record it. The first audience-asked question is inaudible to those watching on the stream as there is no microphone, so his response, which brings up reference to his former bandmates and how well they worked together, is lost on the majority of people.
The next performance, “Famous,” sees Nathan seated behind a keyboard and, before beginning it, he gives some insight into the mindset he had went writing it:
“I wanted to tell a very personal story of mine, but I also wanted people to be able to relate to it.”
The song itself is simplistic, but the chorus in particular shows off the range which had often been hidden or overpowered by others during his time in The Wanted.
Answering a couple of Twitter questions, he confesses that “Kiss Me Quick” was recorded in a single day and that just being himself helped him find his ‘individual’ sound. As for what three things he would take to a desert island, after much deliberation he chooses:
“A boat, a fishing rod, and a flare.”
He then injects a cover into the proceedings admitting:
“You’ve all been asking me to cover this person for a long time, and I’m so nervous about singing it.”
However, that doesn’t stop him from standing up, returning to the mic, and performing “Ordinary People” by John Legend.
Admittedly, although the song isn’t terrible, considering the success of the original, it really doesn’t work that well, but nevertheless scores of his Twitter followers share their excitement, with @annaslr posting the simple message:
“His voice is heaven.”
The audience response is this time much better and when he sits back down, the questions keep coming, once again via Skype and two fans calling in from the USA.
Asked who was his favourite person to work with while recording his album, he admits:
“Seeing Babyface standing there watching me and then to have him compliment my voice was incredible.”
Via Twitter, he is asked about his highlights of the last twelve months, and he spends a couple of minutes excitedly babbling about playing Wembley Stadium as part of the Summertime Ball.
A connection problem results in a few minutes of the show being missed, but with the link re-established, the sight of Nathan back at the keyboard sends Twitter wild as he performs “Over And Over Again," with Twitter user Elizabeth Paige (@Beth_TWxx) saying:
“@NathanSkyes voice is just something else I’m so in love #SSSLive.”
He then closes out the stream with “Kiss Me Quick,” but not before he takes a few minutes to declare his appreciation for everything the fans have done for him by saying:
“Thank you for all your support, for coming tonight, for tuning in. Thank you.”
As an introduction to those unfamiliar with Nathan and his music, the stream works well.
However, with the audience being considerably muted throughout most of the performance, the talents which the solo artist has perhaps don't quite come across as strongly as they likely do when he’s on bigger stages and playing to bigger crowds.