NNAMDÏ Puts on a Show at The Secret Group
Written by Riles Moquin on April 19, 2023
On the tail end of his Please Have A Seat tour, Chicago-based singer, rapper, and multi-instrumentalist NNAMDÏ stopped at The Secret Group to put on an intimate show with opening act Luke Titus for the Houston audience.
Titus – a fellow Chicago-based artist and the opener for the second half of the Please Have A Seat tour – came out around 8 p.m., sitting at the drum kit in between Jonathan and Michael, who rounded out the trio as Titus’s accompanists. Titus interacted regularly with the audience, including a brief introduction where he talked about the group’s dinner at nearby Brass Tracks earlier in the evening.
The opening set was eclectic, wide-ranging and diverse. Titus’s tracks teetered on the a tightrope between lounge jazz and light alt-rock, more often than not leaning towards the former. Some tracks were instrumental and sometimes, Titus would take the mic himself to sing.
The selections from his set came from his several projects from over the years, including tracks from Aside of Love (2017), Plasma (2020), and – most recently – Some Things Take Time (2022). Several times during the set, Titus would remind the audience to anticipate a new project coming this summer.
Closing out his set, Titus performed “Gold,” a Plasma track that mixes a slow-growing backing with a psychadelic-type crooning from Titus. On the tail end of the track, Titus burst in with an energy-infused drum break before pulling back into the chorus one final time.
And with that, NNAMDÏ went to the stage.
Given the tour is in promotion for NNAMDÏ’s most recent record Please Have A Seat (2022), much of the focus throughout the artist’s set was on tracks from the October 2022 record. The singer brought a positive energy from the onset, interacting with fans in the audience and showing a great chemistry with his bandmates – including Titus, who stayed on the drums for NNAMDÏ’s set.
If Titus’s set walked a tightrope between lounge jazz and light alt-rock, NNAMDÏ treaded a line between electronic and alt-rock, instead. Renditions of “I Don’t Wanna Be Famous” and “Touchdown” – two of the most popular tracks from Please Have A Seat – were outstanding, while every once in a while the artist would reach behind and grab a guitar for a track or two.
If the music alone somehow couldn’t keep you engaged, NNAMDÏ’s personability definitely would have done so. Conversations between the audience and the artist included a debate comparing pancakes, waffles, and French toast, while at one point the singer went as far as to jump off stage and run amongst the fans on the floor.
NNAMDÏ’s Please Have A Seat tour concluded with stops in Dallas, Texas (4/14), Lawrence, Kansas (4/15) and Davenport, Louisiana (4/16). While the tour may be over, seeing NNAMDÏ (or Luke Titus, for that matter) next time he’s in town is more than worth the time.