Fans rejoiced as they were able to start their new year off at a sold out show with Eric Nam. On January 29th, the soloist performed to a full house at The Wiltern for the Los Angeles stop of his There and Back Again tour.
Covid safety protocols called for masks and proof of vaccination or a negative test result to enter, but these regulations did not deter the vast amount of attendees from making their way to the historic venue on Saturday night. Fans entering the venue had to be reminded not to run in the lobby as most were unable to contain their joy at seeing a live show for the first time in almost three years. Ready to enjoy their night to the fullest, the audience only grew louder as the lights dimmed for the start of the show.
Opening act Lyn Lapid took the stage first, performing a total of 7 songs to get attendees ready for Eric’s set. The TikTok star impressed with her smooth tone, performing several unreleased songs and covers such as one of “Dandelions” by Lyn’s favorite artist Ruth B, and even a song from Toy Story 2, bringing out a ukulele for the latter. The teen singer-songwriter also performed songs the crowd may be more familiar with, including “Itsy Bitsy,” and her viral TikTok song “In My Mind.” Although everyone at The Wiltern fell in love with Lyn’s voice, the audience could not hold in their excitement once she reached the end of her set, as it meant the main act would be gracing the stage soon enough.
There couldn’t have been Any Other Way for Eric Nam to begin his portion of the show other than to perform one of his latest releases, “Any Other Way.” Working his way through his recently released album of the same name as the tour, Eric performed songs such as “One Way Lover,” “What If,” and “Wildfire.” Not only did he prepare his newer songs, he even threw it back (timeline-wise, not dance-wise) with performances of songs such as “Good For You,” “Congratulations,” and “Love Die Young.” The audience sang along to both old and new songs, keeping a smile on Eric’s face throughout his entire show.
Aside from his breathtaking vocals, the soloist also showed off his dance moves, which he’s mentioned previously that his mother does not approve of, body-rolling and hip-thrusting to his higher energy songs, and even executing some simple choreography to songs such as “Runaway” and “Don’t Call Me.” His performance was paired with a live band, adding to the experience of the bass thumping along in everyone’s chests. With an extensive discography, Eric mentioned that he knows he can’t perform every one of his songs at every show, and wanted to know what the audience wanted to hear. One fan mentioned his song “Wonder,” which he did a short acapella snippet of, forgetting his lyrics at the end of the chorus.
Not skimping out on fan service, either, Eric Nam made sure to engage fans, joking with his usual casual humor. “Thank you for coming to my TED talk,” he started at the beginning of the show, “there are some very R-rated, dare I say X-rated, things written on some of your signs I see tonight. I can’t read them out loud because I know there are kids in the audience.” Throwing hearts to the crowd at any given opportunity, making sure to ask fans on the balcony and in the back by the bar if they’re okay constantly, and even asking fans for 5 specific ones whose birthdays are today to sing them happy birthday, Eric knew how to keep fans at the forefront of his thoughts throughout the night. “You guys are all liars,” he laughed as suddenly everyone was claiming it was their birthday, “but I love you.”
Ending the show with his song “I Don’t Know You Anymore,” fans were left to simmer in their excitement as the soloist left the stage with promises of returning soon. Make sure to check out our photos from the show on our Facebook page, and a special thank you to Live Nation and EN Management for allowing us to attend and cover this event!
Written & Edited By Ephney Tsai