Night with Syd tha Kyd
Written by Bettina Mayberry
THE TIME: 8:17 pm.
THE LOCATION: Downtown Dallas
“Omg bruh. They deep as HELL out here!!! I mean I knew there was going to be a good turnout but like this though??! I hope I’m able to actually get in” I blurted aloud as I sat in the backseat of my UBER, twisting my hair anxiously as my driver pulled up to the venue on this clear, warm night.
The line wrapped around the building of the famous South Side Music Hall November 14 as an eclectic, beautiful mix of excited concert goers waited outside in palpable anticipation to see Syd as she stopped by for the Dallas leg of her Always Never Home Tour.
For music enthusiasts who are not exactly aware of who she is: Syd tha Kyd(Syd) is a singer –songwriter-DJ from California. She is a member of the popular Alternative Hip Hop group Odd future, and in 2011 her, fellow group member Matt Martians, and touring members Steve Lacy , Christopher Smith, and Patrick Paige formed a group known as the Internet. Coining the term “Electric R&B” to describe their sound, they have released three studio albums. But in 2015 they captured the hearts and ears of the world with the third album, Ego Death, which was Grammy nominated for Best Urban Contemporary album. So, yeah. They may not be exactly mainstream, but they are definitely known and cherished amongst those that do know them.
While the Internet is currently on a brief hiatus from working together to pursue personal musical projects, back in February Syd released her solo album Fin, and she more than proved that she is an amazingly talented artist in her own right. And this album that I’ve worn out worse than jeans battling thick thighs, was an album that I was determined to see come to life before my very eyes.
She showed her love to the city in a subtle way that I very much appreciated by rocking a screen t shirt of Erykah Badu(Dallas native)and as the brilliantly illuminated stage lights danced off her signature close haircut, Syd’s melodically eclectic voice gave the large but intimate crowd a welcoming escape that daily life in 2017 hasn’t. She gave an incredible set and made the wait for her to take the stage absolutely worth it.
Not too many artists can sound amazing live as they do in the studio, and I must say Syd definitely did not disappoint. She is an incredible live artist, and even showcased a vocal range throughout the night that really impressed me- given the fact that she’s known for having a very mellow, silky sound. And it only made me appreciate and respect her more.
She went through the whole track list of the album, but the stand out moment of the night was when she performed one of my favorite songs ever, “Girl” the collaboration that the Internet did with artist KAYTRANADA. The moment the opening beat of the song dropped, the crowd erupted and we were all elevated to a euphoric, blissful place that only music has the power to take us. There are certain instances in life where I feel that it’s important to put the phone away and truly BE in the moment instead of recording it. And as I stood there in awe, with the bass vibrating throughout my body, I strongly felt that the performance of Girl was one of those moments. It truly was a very special experience for me. To go from hearing it on my playlist daily, to actually now taking it in visually is something that really no description can adequately capture. It was a vibe like no other.
In between her songs, she showed love and showcased her very demure and shy personality by interacting with the audience, and sang covers of other artists. She gave a great rendition of “Quickie” by Miguel that could have definitely convinced someone that that was her song instead of his.
She shared a very poignant, vulnerable moment with us in which she described how growing up she was always the oddball that wasn’t really great at connecting with other people, and openly admitted that because of that she never could have imagined her life the way it is now as a performer. For a second she was a bit emotional, and expressed gratitude for the outpouring of love that she has received. She then launched into her final song of the night “Insecurities” the final song on the album. It just further strengthened the connection between artist and audience, and once again reminded us as fans as to why we vibe with her in the first place: because she is truly unrefined, like my favorite bottle of coconut oil, and it’s refreshing to see in an age where plenty of artists deem themselves as untouchable.
All in all it was a great experience that I was grateful to cross off my bucket list . And it came as a much needed distraction at the perfect time. It’s always dope to go from listening to an artist all the time that you really identify with, to finally watch them work their magic on stage. It was well worth the sleepiness and zombie-like state of mind I had to endure the next day at the 9-5.