American musician Willow Smith performing at The Rio Theatre in Vancouver, BC on September 8th, 2019

Live Review: Willow Smith + Tyler Cole @ The Rio Theatre – September 8th 2019

American musician and actress Willow Smith performing at the Rio Theatre in Vancouver, BC, with opener Tyler Cole.

I wasn’t sure what I would see when I arrived at this event but I was excited to see what the daughter of actors Will and Jaida Pinkett Smith had to offer.

Tyler Cole came out and put on a very artsy, scatter-brained performance that didn’t seem to really have a singular purpose. It bounced between soft serenity and intense chaos, intermingled with personal stories from someone that the audience didn’t really seem to care about. It felt a little too try-hard from someone that hasn’t earned it yet, a little cart-before-the-horse.

Willow soon came out and saved the night.

Her short forty-minute performance showcased her ability to deliver an emotionally charged set that was equal parts fun and captivating.

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She danced around the stage, a sweet smile glowing brightly, Ms. Smith grabbed the hands of her fans, turning her attention to those at her feet and singing directly towards them.

Her set had soft and aggressive moments but, unlike her opener, she balanced them against one another and they all melded together for in a unified direction. The L.A.-native was also completely genuine and humble during her inter-song banter. She was working for her art.

I was pleasantly surprised by this set, it was a great night out.

I hope to see Willow return to Vancouver so I can bring my daughters to see her next time.

Photos © Jamie Taylor // Cryptic Photography

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