Freshly brewed music with Doug: Desmond John

This Coffee House Session was a special one. Special at least for me, because it was my first gig as an actual PhD student like it says in the bio at the bottom. Yeah, that’s right. You can hopefully call me Dr. Doug in three or four years time. 😊 That means you’ll only have to suffer through my pseudo-journalism for another couple of years! There is light at the end of the tunnel. 😉

It was also a Coffee House Session that I very nearly missed because I was getting a brew in the Atrium and lost track of time!

I’m glad I didn’t miss it though because Desmond John, who came to do the Coffee House tour from South Africa, had a decent set. His voice was a higher-pitched than I expected and the guitar parts immediately reminded me of Joel Baker from last year which was not a bad thing.

Desmond was the first Coffee House artists who (to my knowledge) rapped in some parts. All of the songs he played had a catchy feel to them, and you could tell that Desmond’s sound has a heavy R’n’B influence.

He also performed a medley of some current pop songs, but I felt that the backing track was a bit too loud so for me it didn’t quite work. Having played in bands which cover songs, I know how difficult it can be to pull off a good cover version of a song but despite the levels not being perfect, Desmond gave it a real good effort.

It was nice to see a bigger crowd down in Student Central and it was noticeable that there were a few more female students attending this Coffee House Session, but I am pretty sure they weren’t just there for the music 😉 Desmond, how do you do it? I can’t even get a text back… 😊

Overall, the gig was really good with a particularly poignant moment being a song Desmond performed that was about one of his friends who sadly passed away.

In RamAir, he mentioned that the people at another university called him Declan… Thankfully, that didn’t happen here in Bradford, because we pay attention! As his biggest influences, he named Elton John, George Michael, Prince, and more ‘current’ artists such as Drake and John Mayer. It was also his first visit to the Leeds/Bradford area, and said it was cool to see some northern towns in the UK, and not just major cities like London.

You can find his music on all major platforms (Apple Music, Spotify, etc.), but when it came to the killer question, sadly for me he doesn’t like pineapple on pizza. I stopped taking notes at that point because I was pretty gutted about it… 😊 He was a sound guy though, I promise!

Songs: 4/5
Sound: 4/5
Atmosphere in Student Central: 3/5

Hope you’re liking my blog posts? You can tell me I am wrong and I should stop writing this blog if you don’t, but we all know this won’t happen. 😊 If you have any feedback though, tweet me @whydougydoug and I’ll decide whether to take any of it on board but after all, it’s my blog, not yours – write your own, pal! 😊

See you next week and in the meantime, check out Desmond’s performance:

Author: Doug Schulz

RamAir student radio legend Doug is currently doing is PhD at Bradford after completing his undergraduate in Sociology and a MA in Peace Studies.

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