Music Reviews

“Visibly Excited To Be Playing Again”- Live Review: Jack Savoretti @ Theatre Royal

Nieve O’Donnell

Jack Savoretti’s career has spanned over a decade, between 2007 and 2022, and he continues to follow a path of songwriting which is personal and passionate. New album, ‘Europiana’, possesses more groove and funk than previous work, but still contains Savoretti’s often heartfelt nature. On a Sunday night, Savoretti’s showmanship and his clear love for music carried the band’s performance, the infectious nature of live music making a mark on everyone in attendance. Nieve O’Donnell reviews.

Arriving at Nottingham’s Theatre Royal, my expectations were imbued with a sense of uncertainty; I knew Jack Savoretti for his early work, usually sung together by my dad and myself at a young age, such as Gypsy Love and Dr. Frankenstein. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t expecting a show of the early ballads I used to love listening to with my dad, but – part and parcel of new album ‘Europiana’ – Savoretti tackles funk and groove with gusto, alongside some stellar lighting.

Following two years off the road due to COVID-19, Jack Savoretti and his accompanying touring band were visibly excited to be playing again. From ‘Europiana’, they began with I Remember Us, before following up with popular What More Can I Do, from 2019 album ‘Singing With Strangers’. Warmly, and in a heartfelt manner, Jack explained to the crowd that what he felt with the audience could be “true love”, as he humorously pointed out that someone in the audience smelt nice. “It must be Chanel or something”, he said.

A beautiful ode to life and what we can do with it

Savoretti performed Soldier’s Eyes as a tribute to those at war, fighting for Ukraine. Savoretti’s violinist was heart-wrenchingly sublime, and provoked a near tear to my eye. Highlight for myself, Dr. Frankenstein – a beautiful ode to life and what we can do with it – was foregrounded by Savoretti, stating that he was just 21 when he wrote the song, and he believes he possibly knew more about life at that age than now. “Life was about living in the moment then, we should never get rid of that feeling.”

A symbol of well-executed musicianship

Despite Savoretti being a true showman of the stage, I was pleasantly surprised that throughout the show, he consistently highlighted the musicians with whom he shared the stage. A bongo solo was featured by Jack towards the end of the show, and what I could only call an intimate, jazz circle – populated by a violin, a double bass, a piano and two guitars – was a symbol of well-executed musicianship, and it sounded excellent. It also provided the audience with a further sense of intimacy and closeness to the artist that you wouldn’t normally get at a large-scale concert. In terms of musical collaboration, ‘Europiana’ is littered with stars. Who’s Hurting Who, featuring Nile Rodgers, got everyone up on their feet, and it was evident that his fellow musicians enjoy performing this one too.

The encore happily surprised many audience members, including myself, as Savoretti entered into a passionate, new medley of Dusty Springfield’s You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me, and lo che non vivo (senza te), marking some of Savoretti’s Italian heritage. Finishing the show with Each And Every Moment from ‘Europiana’, it felt as if Savoretti was leaving us with a message – live in the moment and don’t take anything for granted. Upon leaving, I rang my mum and dad, proclaiming that they must see Jack Savoretti live sometime soon.

Nieve O’Donnell

Featured image courtesy of Alex Watkin. Permission to use granted to Impact. No changes were made to this image.

In-article image courtesy of @jacksavoretti via No changes were made to this image.

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