The pandemic devastated the live music industry. Independent venues and DIY spaces were left vulnerable, forced to navigate challenging terrain in order to survive. The Jim Beam Welcome Sessions is a celebration of those indie venues that have helped shape the foundation of live music.
The multi-year partnership will see Jim Beam champion independent music venues on a global scale. The series is an ode to the special relationship between artists and the venues they cut their teeth in. Inspired by Jim Beam’s welcoming spirit, each episode will see an artist return to an independent venue that welcomed them during their comeuppance.
The first instalment of Welcome Sessions will see Brit Award-nominated artist Jack Garratt return to London’s Village Underground. Jack’s homecoming show at Village Underground was the final date of his particularly gruelling first UK tour. The sold-out performance saw Jack perform to a crowd of 700 fans.
“I arrived in London, after a tour of bad luck and technical difficulties, and everything just worked. Not just technically, but also the experience that the venue provided. I immediately felt a connection to this audience of hundreds standing in front of me. An audience who were singing every word of every song back to me. I was home,” Jack recalls of the performance.
“For that brief moment in time, nothing else existed beyond the venue’s four walls, and I was in the one place in which I felt I truly belonged. It changed me as a performer forever, convincing me that I did not need to worry so much anymore. Any self-doubt about if I was on my way up or not was put to bed. It was the start of something that changed my life forever,” he continued.
“I’m not religious, but it’s the closest thing to a congregation I’ve been a part of. All of us in one room, sharing a single experience in which strangers become communities if only fleetingly, escaping together to experience a singular event that is absolutely unforgettable and utterly distinct.”
Working in collaboration with production team La Blogotheque, Jack delivered a luscious performance of his single ‘Time’ alongside a full horn section and choir.
You can catch Jack’s performance on June 10th via the Jim Beam YouTube channel. The future of Welcome Sessions will see performances from the likes of Fontaines DC, Jose Gonzalez, and other soon-to-be-announced acts.