Even though Sara Bareilles has spent more than a decade on the road as a touring musician, the recent New York City transplant still feels overwhelmed with anxiety before going on tour. And with her solo tour just days from beginning, she’s feeling even more pressure.
Typically aided by a backing band, Bareilles latest tour, which kicks off this Thursday (April 25) in Washington, D.C., has her playing small clubs all by her lonesome.
“I was very nervous about this tour,” the West Village’s newest resident told New York radio station Fresh 102.7. “They’re really intimate venues. I wanted it to feel like a really special occasion because I’ve never toured this way and I don’t know when I’ll get the opportunity to do that again.”
With each show already sold out, Bareilles is now more concerned than ever about entertaining a crowd that is accustomed to a full stage of musicians.
“I’m so scared the audience is going to get bored,” she says jokingly. But advice from close friends Ben Folds and Richard Marx, who have both embarked on successful solo tours, help put her mind at ease.
“[Marx]was one of the first people that told me, ‘You gotta go on a solo tour. It’ll change everything for you,'” she said. The tour will make 18 stops across the country, traveling West to California before closing near at the Highline Ballroom, near her new home in the Lower West Side, on May 23.
Bareilles’s Brave Enough tour begins just two days after the release of her latest single, “Brave,” out April 23, off her upcoming album, The Blessed Unrest, which sends a message of empowerment to all those women out there who are too afraid to speak up.
“Empowering young woman… it’s a concept that is near and dear to my heart,” says Bareilles, who recalls being bullied in middle school over her weight. “I love seeing those girls just kind of be themselves on camera and be free and liberated.”
The aforementioned girls she speaks of are those who star in her the “Brave” lyric video. With the official music video still in the works and the popularity of lyric videos continuing to rise, Bareilles produced the clip with the help of close friend and director Lindsey Burns.
As a songwriter, being able to see the lyrics is something she genuinely enjoys. “I love it because I want to know what everyone’s talking about. I want to know the story.”
Watch the video for “Brave,” off her album, The Blessed Unrest (out July 16) below.
– E.J. Judge/Fresh 102.7