With her warm voice and charismatic stage presence, it’s easy to forget Alessia Cara is 19 years old.
The once-YouTube singer from Brampton, Ontario, took the stage at The Vogue Theatre on Tuesday night for a sold-out show. Her impressive Know-It-All Tour included several sold-out gigs along the way, even across the pond in the U.K. With her debut album Know-It-All making the charts globally, it’s hardly a surprise how tough it is to get your hands on tickets to her shows.
The 2016 JUNO nominee is currently on tour with fellow Canadian Craig Stickland. Cara is far from just being the pop-star who samples Portishead’s “Glory Box” in her hit single “Here”; she is a pop star creating her own name, own style, and she is owning it at such an early age.
Her adoring Vancouver fans waited outside The Vogue hours prior to the show to meet their idol, and some were successful. Inside the venue, a predominantly female crowd buzzed of excitement until the moment Cara hit the stage. From her first note, Cara’s voice resonates of an old soul. As she began with her lyrics to “I’m Yours,” the fans immediately begin to sing along.
With her big curls (matching mine, no big deal) and laid-back demeanor (also matching mine), the young starlett engaged the crowd in between each song on her 60-minute setlist. Often speaking to the fans as ‘just one of the girls’, she managed to thank everyone from fans to the band, and even gave general life advice. Her character is sincere, and she comes off extremely grateful. “You can do anything you want to do,” she said, encouraging her fans before “Four Pink Walls.”
The petite Cara shined as she played the guitar during “Overdose,” and her powerful voice was haunting during pop ballad “Stone.” Nearing the end of the show, the soulful singer addressed those who look in the mirror regularly and don’t like what they see in their reflections. “It’s all in your head, and it’s not about that in the first place,” she said, her voice raspy, almost breaking up at this point. “When we leave this earth, it will be what we left behind, and has nothing to do with how you look.”
Although some may question Cara’s ability as a singer/songwriter at her age, her live performance showed her versatility, charisma, and wisdom. Cara, who’s signed to legendary label Def Jam Records, is not the average pop-star using sex to sell, but the complete opposite of that. Her voice and talent puts Cara in a category of her own. And for a girl whose biggest fans include Taylor Swift (and Jacob Hoggard of Hedley who was spotted in the Vancouver crowd), her show on Tuesday was solid proof that Cara’s career is only going to flourish.
Alessia Cara is scheduled to perform at the JUNO Awards in Calgary on Sunday, April 3.
Photos for Vancity Buzz provided by Brandon Artis. Connect with him at @_brandonartis.