- Harry Styles released his second solo album, “Fine Line,” on Friday.
- To celebrate the arrival of his newest body of work, Styles performed a special one night only show at the iconic venue, The Forum, in Inglewood, California.
- Fans came from around the world to see Styles perform his own headlining show for the first time in more than a year.
- Here’s what it was like to attend the event.
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Harry Styles ushered in the start of his “Fine Line” era on album release day by performing a one night only, sold-out show in Los Angeles. The former One Direction member drew thousands of people to The Forum to hear his album sung in its entirety live for the first time on the same day it was released.
The concert was wildly unique in that the show was separate from a tour – his second solo tour, Love On Tour, will begin next June in Philadelphia. But Friday’s show? It was a celebration for Styles’ newest work, and it was just for his fans to really enjoy and have a good night with the artist they love most.
Here’s what it was like to attend.
I went to the show with my longtime friend Emily, who I knew would be a fabulous dancing partner and lyric-yeller with me.
I was fortunate enough to attend the show. I went with my friend from college, Emily, who used to scream One Direction songs with me in the streets of New York City. We arrived at the venue by 8 p.m. with plenty of time to park and get our tickets at will call.
The Forum was decorated in pink lights, spelling out “Fine Line” and “Harry Styles.”
Once we found our seats – section 132, row 13 – Emily marveled at how “old school” the venue was.
As it got closer to 9, people started chanting “Harry” more and more frequently.
The stage had two screens, with one reading “Fine” and the other, “Line.” A circular screen floated above the stage, which during the show, served as a large screen for those on the floor.
Finally, Harry came out onstage. “I’m back,” he coyly said. “Good evening and my name is Harry.”
He joked that he has “more than 10 songs now” to perform at his shows, as opposed to his initial solo tour for his eponymous first album. He explained that this show would be extra special in that he’d perform the album from start to finish, which I suppose is not how the set list will be on tour next year.
At the top of the show, Styles said his classic, safe-space-building line: “Be whoever you want to be in this room tonight.”
Seeing the audience filled with people of all genders and ages, and knowing from personal experience, I’m sure each person felt the warm and welcoming spirit of Styles, and felt free to be themselves.
He performed his songs in album order as promised.
At one point, he rubbed his belly as he sang “I want your belly” during “Watermelon Sugar” – a reference to the lyric.
In between songs, Styles chatted with the audience members. He conversed with a Brazilian fan who flew all the way to Los Angeles for him. He thanked us for coming, and noted how beautiful we all looked.
Styles forwent the guitar for his slow ballad “Falling.”
During “Falling,” his stripped down piano ballad, Styles requested fans to take out their phones and turn on their flashlights. The audience obliged, of course, and fans noted the seriousness of the song and ceased screaming during the track. Styles’ growth as a singer was on full display in his “Falling” vocals – the man can sing.
He would tease the audience between songs.
After he performed “To Be So Lonely,” Styles cheekily teased the audience about a moment during the song: “Why when I sang I was an ‘arrogant son of a b—-,’ you sang the loudest?”
Styles joked with the crowd again after making silly “booping” noises and a cheek pop during “Sunflower, Vol. 6.”
“See, I’m fun,” he insisted after his playful mouth movements.
Before “Treat People With Kindness,” the upbeat, feel-good song that emits pure optimism, Styles invited the chorus singers on stage.
“The fun part for me is, I don’t sing on the chorus, so I can just dance,” he said.
While some might not agree with me, “Treat People with Kindness” is 100% joy as a song made better only by Styles’ ear-to-ear smile and energizer bunny dancing on stage during its chorus.
Toward the end of his rundown of album tracks, Styles made a joke, of which I could not hear whatsoever. Clearly I wasn’t alone – almost as if he heard me ask Emily, “What did he say?” Styles said, “I said ‘probably,'” referencing that he was “probably” done after the next song. He wasn’t done – not in the slightest.
Styles paid homage to Fleetwood Mac and the group that got him to where he is, One Direction.
After the album’s title track was “Sign of the Times,” his first single from his first album. But then the crowd went truly wild. He brought legendary singer Stevie Nicks onstage for a duet of Fleetwood Mac’s “Landslide.”
“I know, cool isn’t it?” Styles asked the audience after she joined him on stage. They had an adorable mentor-mentee vibe, holding hands and dancing during the song.
The 25-year-old paid tribute to his boy band days with “What Makes You Beautiful” in the folk-rock arrangement he typically uses for the song when performing solo.
Styles then covered Paul McCartney’s “Wonderful Christmastime.”
Before getting into the song, he shouted out that Christmas and Hanukkah are on the horizon later this month. As a Jewish fan, I appreciated the inclusion.
The singer also made the impossible happen in Southern California – he made it “snow” during the festive song.
Styles then ended the show with his evergreen crowd-pleaser, “Kiwi.”
While the ground didn’t shake and he didn’t perform it three times like he did at his last show at The Forum, it was truly the celebratory, good-time feels kind-of-song that could only have ended the night. Until next time, Harry Styles.