James Blunt was back in Dubai to serenade his fans at the Skywards Dubai International Jazz Festival.
The English singer-songwriter and musician headlined the opening night of the nine-day Dubai Jazz Festival on Thursday, filling the cold desert night with his hit tunes and unique vocal talent.
Blunt had previously set a record in crowd attendance when he first performed at the same festival in 2009.
But even at the event’s new home at the Al Badia Golf Club in Dubai Festival City, his fans again came in droves, grooving to his new upbeat tunes and waxing sentimental with the ballads that have come to define his music.
“It’s a wonderful feeling to be performing again here in Dubai. I like the crowd here – great audience, the good vibe and with the new lovely setting. It’s exciting to be here once again,” the singer told tabloid! in an interview prior to his performance.
People of all ages and walks of life attended Thursday night’s event, including a few mums and dads tugging along baby strollers. Couples were aplenty, taking the opportunity to spend a post-Valentines date with one of UK’s most successful music artist in the past decade.
The sincerity of Blunt’s music, his unique voice, and his very laid back get-up – t-shirt and jeans – are perhaps what make ordinary people relate to him and his songs, and this was exactly the atmosphere Thursday night as the crowd felt very at ease and relaxed throughout the night.
Blunt moved from one guitar to another and even had a few turns at the piano as he dished out a repertoire consisting of new songs as well as music from his debut album in 2005, Back to Bedlam, which is recognised as the best-selling album of the 2000s in the UK. The most memorable moment of the night, nonetheless, was still reserved for his most popular songs You’re Beautiful and Goodbye My Lover. The crowd sang along and the songs were the most applauded performances of the concert.
It was evident, though, that new songs from his latest album Some Kind of Trouble offer a more upbeat, positive vibe, which he says is a departure from the “miserable” songs he used to write.
Blunt told tabloid!: “Yeah, my new songs are more upbeat. I’ve written a few miserable songs and I’m not that miserable. I’ve picked up an electric guitar this time and it just allowed me to write the songs which I wanted to write – you know, some fast ones.”