It's always a pleasure to go to a gig that has been put on of for a deeper reason. Mencap sessions curated by ambassador Jo Whiley bought alive St John in Hackney Church. Incredible line-ups with today's most eclectic artists, from Ollie Murs and Gary Barlow, Amy Macdonald and Lucy Rose right through to Noah and The Whale and Richard Hawley.
The Friday night saw Jessie Ware share the stage with Jamie N Commons and The Maccabees. There are so many reasons why hosting a gig in a history rich building works, the space, the beauty and most importantly the acoustics. Hearing Jessie Ware's hauntingly beautiful 'Wildest Moments' ring out across East London was an unforgiving highlight. Recently Mercury nominated, 2012 has been an incredible year for her and the wisdom she has gained on stage emanated. A girl who is well and truly on fire with the brightest future and respect from musical fans and the industry's masses. A strong and versatile performer with a voice that can break boundaries and span across musical genres.
With his raspy tones and solid performance ability Jamie N Commons shone throughout his performance. When he finally managed to tame his hat that seemed to want to take off throughout his performance, he converted those who had not laid witness to him live previously. A tight yet chilled out band with innovative songs and a live brass section glued beautifully together with a saxophone and trumpet.
Finally The Maccabees took to the stage. The expectant crowd dense with die hard fans. These guys sound just as good live as they do blaring from your car stereo on a Sunday afternoon playing top tracks from their album 'Given To The Wild'. A band that have grown and bonded tightly over the last year showed ability way beyond support sets at festivals over the summer. Their set begins slowly but builds gradually until you see mosh pits appear at the very centre of the chapel. Something in most people's life times you would never in any other circumstance be witness to. Their fans are loyal and are growing as quickly as the bands popularity. Crowds sipped on mint loaded mojitos which once moved past the "should you drink them in a church or not?" guilt complimented the night perfectly. Donations made by text message throughout the gig poured in as the artists performed. A civilized, well organised night with an awesome atmosphere and a fulfilled and satisfied audience. The beautifully lit church standing elegantly amongst the chaos, with more wisdom and grace than any of the crowds that filled its walls. An incredible night and a creative masterpiece for a truly wonderful cause.