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Sam Dickinson: The Acoustic Nights Tour - The Mining Institute, Newcastle

Published by: Steve Burbridge on 24th Mar 2014 | View all blogs by Steve Burbridge

Who knew that a spring Saturday night in Newcastle would hold in store a rare and exquisite experience; that something would occur that only happens, perhaps, once in a decade? That I would have the privilege of watching a performer destined for a meteoric rise to success in the intimate grandeur of a Mining Institute?

Sam Dickinson is something quite exceptional - a singer/songwriter who has, in equal measure, an abundance of both talent and integrity. Thankfully, thus far, he remains untouched and, indeed, untarnished, by the commercial music industry who, all too often, process, package, brand and market the individuality out of many vocalists.

Newcastle was the second venue on his short ‘Acoustic Nights’ tour, and Sam performed to an appreciative audience. Interspersing his own songs (taken from his debut album, The Stories That Occurred) with covers of tracks by Amy Winehouse and Tina Turner, he effortlessly showcased a range that is nothing less than phenomenal. Indeed, although he undoubtedly has a style all of his own, at times I found myself being reminded of some of my favourite performers. There were the high notes that I thought only Jimmy Somerville could hit; the melancholy of a Marc Almond lyric, and the showmanship of Andy Bell.

Accomplished but never arrogant, confident but not cocky, Sam also introduced each song with the stories that provided the inspiration behind them – it gave each song an added emotional subtext.

Finally, I must make two brief apologies: firstly, the constraints of the word-count render it impossible to review, in the detail they deserve, the performances of supporting artists, Lily Clark and Alex Dobson; secondly, this review would have been online much earlier had I not spent so much time on Sunday playing Sam’s debut album!

Steve Burbridge.


1 Comment

  • Cameron Lowe
    by Cameron Lowe 4 years ago
    High praise indeed, Mr. Burbridge! I look forward to hearing more of Sam Dickinson in the future.
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