Grammer performs free show to students


Photo by Anna Mills

Andy Grammer performs with his guitar during the EWU concert at Reese Court on June 1.

By Lelia Thatcher & Eric Long, for the Easterner

Andy Grammer, platinum-selling recording artist, enlivened the crowd of Eastern students with an upbeat and vibrant performance at Reece Court on June 1 that even those who did not know much about Grammer cheered and praised him for.

“Kiss You Slow” was Grammer’s opening song and while the audience did not seem to know the lyrics, it did not take long for the pop star to get the crowd riled up.

Grammer said the main difference between performing on tour and here at EWU is that at college shows “people come because they’ve heard like one song, so you have to really win them over.”

There was a soundcheck delay between the opening act and Grammer due to him and his band experiencing flight issues, which pushed back their performance.

While the delay lasted for about an hour, it did not seem to affect students’ thoughts on the performance.

“The concert was awesome. I had a great time,” said freshman Khalil Williams.

Williams said his favorite part was when everyone sang along to “Honey, I’m Good,” and while he only knew a few of Grammer’s songs, Williams said he will listen to more of his music.

Freshman Karli Stevens said the concert was amazing. “[My favorite part] was when [Grammer] came down and I got a really close picture of him,” she said.

Grammer acknowledged small town performances are “sometimes more fun because they’re like less jaded and they freak out.”

His performance consisted of beat boxing, trumpet playing and covers of the songs “Thrift Shop” by Macklemore, “Sunday Morning” by Maroon 5 and “Chasing Cars” by Snow Patrol.

While it remains unclear as to whether or not Grammer knew Macklemore was EWU’s previous concert, Arie Chamberlain, event volunteer, thought it was “really funny when he started singing Macklemore.” Regardless, the crowd seemed to be pleased as they were singing along to the cover.

Grammer covered “Trumpets” by Jason Derulo. Using an audio device, Grammer and his band recorded different sounds, such as a trumpet, drum sticks on a stool and beat-box vocals. They played them back in repetition to form the melody of the song’s chorus.

He closed the night with his 2014 hit single “Back Home.” As soon as he ran off the stage, the crowd demanded an encore and he delivered by performing “Co-Pilot.” He and his band also took a selfie with the crowd.

The selfie can be found on his personal Instagram with the caption, “EASTERN WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY!!! GO EAGS!!! #sweatyfantasticevening.” The majority of comments were from students. Grammer also responded to and retweeted several EWU students on Twitter.

As if his performance was not enough, Grammer had some advice for college students: “Whatever it is you want to do, don’t be scared and just do it. Do it way more than you talk about doing it, whatever your passion is,” he said. “For me, I just went to the street and started performing, so figure out what that means for your career.”

According to Grammer, the secret to success is someone finding out how to get good enough at what they do, to the point of lending their own attention to another individual, even if the listener does not like it.

“It takes a really long time as an artist and songwriter to create something and then deliver it, sing it, produce it, get it in a way that you are no longer giving me your attention, I’m giving you something,” said Grammer.

As for Grammer’s college experience, he said, “It was like a great place to fail. You can just like swing and miss a ton of times and not really be penalized too heavily for it, you know?”

Volunteers for the event had duties such as line control, stair guarding and taking tickets. They were rewarded at the end of the night with a meet-and-greet with Grammer.

“I was on line control, it was really fun,” said Keirstan Hanson, event volunteer and ASEWU director of finance. She said she enjoyed the concert, as well.

The opening band Lavoy, an electronic rock and alternative pop band from Wasilla, Alaska, excited students for Grammer’s performance with up-tempo songs.

“It was awesome. It couldn’t have been better,” said Stacy Reece, director for SAIL. “From the time that we finally identified the artists all the way up to tonight, it was really pretty smooth.”