Clare Maguire @ St Barnabus, Soho 2nd March 2011

© Maguirettes

To celebrate the release of debut album Light After Dark Birmingham’s very own Clare Maguire decided to hold a secret gig in London. Money could not buy tickets to this gig. The only way you could get a pair is if you signed up to the official mailing list and 25 lucky Maguire fans then received the details revealing the venue. This week had been a busy one for Clare after she had done both Glasgow and Birmingham instores where she performed live and signed copies of the album So all in all it was extremely nice that she came to London to perform what was to be an amazing event. The gig took place at House Of St Barnabus in Soho. For those who haven’t been there before it is basically a house for homeless women. It was a strange choice for a live gig but all was to be revealed later on. So nearing 7pm everyone went inside and went to the bar (in fact beers, wine and soft drinks were free) then just chilled out until the doors opened. Fifteen minutes passed and people could go in. The gig was going to take place in the chapel area so drinks could not be taken in. It was actually all seated inside the chapel, I then sat down to find a rose on my seat (everyone had a rose on their seat). Clare amd the rest of the band came down the aisle and took to the stage for what would be ever so amazing. Maguire may consider GAY that she performed her favourite gig but I would say this night was amazing and special. It was a real shame that you could not film or take photos because I would of loved to have something to look back on. Actually taking photos would spoil your experience as it will never happen again. The set which Clare played was different compared to the last time I saw her. There were 3 songs on the 8 track set list I had not heard yet. Freedom kicked things off and this stripped back version of the song was simply incredible. I find Chapels/ Churches the best venues because the vocals can be ever so powerful. The backing singers worked wonders. Break These Chains was delivered perfectly Maguire hit every note fautlessly. I was literally sitting transfixed and clinging onto every word Clare sung. It was then onto current single Last Dance. Maguire mentioned she wanted people to sing along as she didn’t want to sing it all alone.  Now I love this song it is beautiful and the lyrics are extremely catchy as well. Following on was a cover by gospel singer Sister Rosetta Tharpe. In fact Rosetta is Maguire’s biggest insperation of a female artist. Still Trouble In Mind was superbly sung and this version did blow me away. I hadn’t heard the original version of the song but it had the same feel to it like At Last by Etta James. This was truly a remarkable cover which Maguire completely nailed. She also everyone to Youtube her. The Shield And The Sword was next. This song is actually quite dark when you carefully disect the lyrics. The hand movements were perfectly choreographed with the backing singers. Bullet the 6th song on the night and I love this beautiful song. The penultimate song on the night was This Is Not The End. Clare told the audience she wrote the song a week after her Grandad passed away. Now this song was powerful and emotional at the same time. Ending the night was a song that is not on the album and this being Mess You Around which will be released on the Wah Wah 45’s record label. This song closed what was an excellent night also everyone stood up and clapped along to the song.

SET LIST

Freedom
Break These Chains
Last Dance
Trouble In Mind
The Shield And The Sword
Bullet
This Is Not The End
Mess You Around

OVERALL: Instead of having goody bags with small bottles of Jack Daniels Maguire told us that there was a free bar which was nice. So after the gig finished I went to the bar had a couple of drinks then left on a high after having been at something special and incredible.

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