Tate McRae had a unique opportunity on her recent tour. Unlike other artists that welcomed back fans when they eventually hit the roads, McRae, for the most part, introduced herself to fans with these performances. While McRae has been in the public eye for quite some time, she was most known for being a dancer before the pandemic. A month into the shutdown, McRae released her “breakout hit,” as RCA Records puts it, “you broke me first.” Her stardom only grew from there, McRae even collaborated with Khalid for a single in 2021. So this debut tour was more than a celebration of music, but an introduction of sorts.
It was an introduction that was uniquely on both ends. While McRae was creating a music profile for herself, her fans were discovering their rhythmic tastes. Tate McRae’s tour was, for many attendants, their first concert. Waiting in line for the venue, one can hear nervous teenagers try to find their GA seats before reaching the doors. GA stands for General Admission to Irving Plaza, a standing venue.
As the teenagers crammed towards the stage, one can see the community that was bubbling between them. They may not have known each other before the lineup. But after the show, they would all have one thing in common: a renewed artist admiration for Tate McRae. They may also share a love for the openers that were, in my opinion, a perfect addition to McRae. Gayle, who like most of the fans matured during the pandemic years, bridged the music between virtual and reality. Mimi Webbs, with her English accent, reminded attendees that music is a global language. And McRae’s headlining performance, tied both ideas together.
Leading with “r u okay,” McRae took a quick temperature of the audience with her beloved single from December of 2020. I believe that McRae knew that her audience would be as novice as her to live performances, so they shared a warm-up. The first few songs were solely musical adventures. By the performance of “all my friends are fake,” the comfort levels rose, along with the energy levels. McRae’s back-up dancers also joined the stage then. However, fans filled the back-up vocals from the very first lyric to the last.
Tate McRae’s shows are perfectly adapted to life post-shutdown. Energy levels fluctuate with the set list, focuses shift from the music to the dancing, even McRae’s lyrics fit to the new world and new language we live with. If there’s a first post-shutdown performance to see, it would be McRae’s. The tour is not over yet, McRae is performing in Detroit tonight and around the Midwest and East until April 16. Even if you have missed McRae’s tour, you don’t need to miss her performances. Tate McRae has signed on to be the opener for Shawn Mendes upcoming tour, “Wonder.”