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Nick Ellis & The Sunset Sessions – A review by Matthew Jacobson

It’s been said that because sunsets are so beautiful, every day can end beautifully. The Sunset Sessions at Nomad confirmed this as the triumphant trilogy of events ended with a rich sun blessed kiss from the skies.

The horizon was in the distance, but all eyes were on the event as a plethora of influences and artists took to the floor to perform their work – for us. All organised and driven by the formidable singer songwriter, Nick Ellis.

The series of Sunset Sessions commenced on 25 June 2022 and finished 27 Aug 2022. The three events were timed and formed to perfection. As you came down from one, another was there to cool down the scorching summer sun with a calmness and breeze as the artists pleased the adoring audience with art – and art in abundance.

The tranquil free flowing Nomad hosted the trilogy with kind and caring staff and that kindness continued to spread as many supported the suspended ticket policy. The event posters were designed by Ed Rimmer, whose vision added magic to the event with his artwork capturing the mood and vibe of the sessions.

The events were sold out with Nick Ellis headlining and with Spoken Word artist and outstanding writer, Roy, playing sublime and sweet sounds from the vinyl vaults. It really wasn’t to be missed!

The first event revved up the engine and the journey began with a set of stunning sounds and artists eagerly supporting the night, each other and the audience. The second provided bliss and nothing was missed – music and poetry found themselves entwined and fine dined with an amazing added bonus from poet Toria Garbutt, stepping in last minute to support and serenade all with words – lots of beautiful, meaningful, purposeful words to educate and enjoy.

For the third and final session, I was asked to MC the night. I was never going to refuse, nerves kicked in days before, but this was a chance and a dream, so I was always going to agree.

The Sunset Session – Event 3

With bespoke work for the event, poet, writer and performer, Sally Porter, opened the night with poetry full of wit and warmth. Poet Dan Cullinan took us on a personal journey that tugged on the heart’s heart, before lifting us all with humorous Acid House memories of yesteryear. Karen Turley sweetly serenaded us all with craft and skill and a voice of several angels sitting sweetly under the sun.

Sally Porter, Dan Cullinan and Karen Turley – Photograph by Michelle Marshall

Before the headline artist made his way to the stage, I remembered a quote from Emily Dickinson who once asked for the “sunset in a cup”, but halfway through the night I sent the skies my apologies – we had it all to ourselves as the creatives were clearly determined to sprinkle the sunset vibes across the session to the loyal audience.

And then I introduced Nick Ellis – a true moment for myself.

Nick Ellis & The Sunset Sessions - A review by Matthew Jacobson
Nick Ellis – Photograph by Michelle Marshall

Nick played with desire and velocity and full capacity to change the setting and shade of the sunset in the background. He took us on his journey of musical tapestry and song craft. He used a magical and mesmerising rhythmic attack to paint his canvas, but to also draw you in. His lyrics are full of substance and meaning. Not all artists succeed in externalising internal feelings, thoughts or vision for the listener to connect with, but Nick is one of the successful artists who can deliver for you and deliver for us.

The setlist delved deep into the Nick Ellis’ classy catalogue – a musical library with outstanding songs such as ‘All Night Long’ and ‘Lovers in July’ providing the audience in August with an embrace as the latter somehow transported you to the green parks of promise and precisely amongst the pretty poppies and the flowers of fortune.The audience were then treated to Spoken Word artist Roy delivering a piece with Nick playing guitar. The delivery was brilliant with carefully crafted quick-fire attack, thought, contemplation, sensitivity and wit – with a question or two for all to grab onto – and all did so.

Spoken Word Artist, Roy – Photograph by Michelle Marshall

Nick Ellis then continued the gig to rapturous applause and then he gave all more with a triumphant encore. The event closed as darkness closed the day. The stars said hello and we said goodnight.

Connection is key and the Sunset Sessions connected, protected and brought people together which may sound impressive, because it is – and it’s true. We continue to jump over the hurdles of life and when they become too high for some, we have to bring people up and help others to overcome the challenges of today. Art is too important not to share and across all of the events, it was shared beautifully and equally.

The Sunset Sessions softened the sticks, stones and glass of life that we walk on. It provided optimism and respect. It was inclusive, it was magical, it was ours and it was yours.

It was perfect.

10/10

Congratulations to all

Love and Peace

Matt

Matt Jacobson

Explore Liverpool

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