NPR’s eternally delightful Tiny Desk Concert rarely hosts electronic artists, but Fred again.. has become an exception to the rule with his new performance from behind the Desk.
Translating his hits including “Kyle (I Found You)” and “Delilah (Pull Me Out of This)” to the format, Fred delivered a tight, often very pretty, characteristically emotive performance for which he taught himself to play the marimba, made a few live loops and generally tweaked his typical performance style to make it all work.
“I spent weeks practicing this and learning instruments I hadn’t played for years to try and make this as special as I possibly could,” the artist born Fred Gibson said in a press release. “EVVERRRYYYY thing you hear in this I play totally live. And there are some sounds I really couldn’t believe we were able to make like this.”
Fred does some singing himself, also teleporting collaborators into the room via a smaller version of the iPhone shaped screen used in his live shows.
“When Fred again.. first proposed a Tiny Desk concert, it wasn’t immediately clear how he was going to make it work — not because he lacked creativity, but because translating purely electronic music at the Desk is a daunting task for anyone,” Tiny Desk staffer Teresa Xie writes in the video’s caption. “How would an artist, whose performances take the form of DJ sets in front of massive audiences, curate an intimate and unique experience?
“But what the British songwriter and producer came up with is a reminder of what a Tiny Desk is at its best: an opportunity for artists to challenge themselves in such a way that it almost feels like they’re making new music, all while sticking to what feels true to them,” Xie continues. “For Fred again.. that meant re-learning the marimba, playing the vibraphone, singing at the piano and looping sounds and beats — all at the same time.”
Watch Fred again..’s Tiny Desk concert below: