Jacob Collier is no stranger to performing in small spaces — most of his YouTube performances are based in his miniscule home studio — but Monday (July 22) marked the North London-based singer’s first visit to to NPR’s Tiny Desk Concert space.
“It just feels like such a tremendous, ridiculous honor to sit behind this hallowed desk,” said Collier after opening with the jazzy “Make Me Cry,” the debut single off of his recent album, Djesse Vol. 2.
Known for his intricate compositions, Collier and his fellow musicians — including two female back-up singers who mirrored his croon-y, lounge singer vocals — switched between instruments throughout the performance: a drummer doubled as a xylophonist, while Collier, dressed in a brightly pattered sweater, himself dabbled in acoustic bass and piano.
Before jumping into a chilling performance of “Feel,” Collier announced he’d spent the last year making four full-length albums, Vol. 2 marking the second out of four.
For his final song, the folk singer performed a track he’d written just days before, specfically tailored to the Tiny Desk environment. Opening with a series of claps, “It Don’t Matter” quickly evolved into a jazzy track backed by Collier’s melodica (a keyboard-harmonica hybrid).
Check out Collier’s full performance below.