“My hope is that one day we will love people for who they are, regardless of colour, religion or sexuality. We would just look at them and love the person behind that face,” said former Australian Idol Guy Sebastian midway through his MTV Sessions gig, before getting on the keys and launching into a soulful rendition of his hit single “Get Along”. That was the one quote that stuck in my mind hours after the performance at the Waterfront studios at Resorts World Singapore ended. Partly because I found it very relatable, especially with the current state of affairs that has been circulating in the news recently, but also because I felt privileged that I had the opportunity to hear from the man himself, the inspiration behind this song, which I always found special because of its meaningful lyrics. Trivia: He wrote this just before his son was born: a plea to people in the world to love each other more so that it will be a more pleasant place to live in.
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Guy struck me as a laid-back, down-to-earth, dude. And his personality shone in front of the 200-odd people gathered in an intimate setting at the live-recording studio. I was particularly impressed by the acoustics of the venue, which helped to highlight the richness and almost angelic quality of Guy’s voice. It was a one-hour set; a duration which I thought was apt, and Guy performed a good mixture of his more recent and older hits. Songs I particularly enjoyed were “Battle Scars”, “Like a Drum”, and his “Art of Love” duet with back-up singer Carmen Sing.
It was a real treat for the audience when Guy specially included his first hit single “Angels Brought Me Here” in the middle of the set. It was rather unexpected, and he agreed saying that he does not perform that song much anymore, mostly due to the fact that it was released such a long time ago when he won Australian Idol in 2003 and subsequently released the single. It has been more than 10 years, but the song, in my opinion, has not lost its appeal. Some call it cheesy, perhaps there is merit for that claim, but it was what marked his ascend into the music industry, and will be what his fans will always remember him by. It was a truly sentimental moment, with the audience belting out the song with him, reminding me that some songs do stick with an artiste forever, that music transcends time.
After executing many impressive and on-point musical runs, Guy’s voice did suffer a bit at the end as it got a little strained, something that was perfectly understandable given how much he gave to his first few songs earlier. Nevertheless, I felt extremely honoured to be one of the few selected guests who was given the opportunity to catch a glimpse into Guy’s musical journey, that I could experience music at its simplest, singing and songwriting at its finest.
Why should you catch Guy’s performance on MTV Asia when it premieres (in about 2 weeks time)? Well, if you are like me and are interested in how certain songs come about, the intricacies and the stories behind every lyric and note, then this would be a performance you don’t want to miss. MTV Sessions: Guy Sebastian, premieres on MTV Asia on Friday, 18 July at 9pm (WIB), 10pm (SG/HK) and 11pm (MAL) with additional content available online at www.mtvasia.com/mtvsessions.