Son Little brings his homecoming show to Johnny Brenda's
Son Little | photo by Anthony Saint James

Earlier this year, I bore witness to one of the greatest things any concertgoer can ever see.

It was a WXPN Free At Noon show. The artist: Son Little, the Philly-based singer/guitarist whose minimalist take on old-school soul and R&B repurposes a classic American art form for new ears. Dressed simply in a beanie and nondescript flannel, he was nonetheless extremely magnetic, playing and singing by himself to open one of his songs, I think “Your Love Will Blow Me Away When My Heart Aches.” Everybody in attendance was in the palm of his hand. Well before the release of his highly-acclaimed, self-titled album on indie/rock giant ANTI- last month, he had all the trappings of someone on his way to big things.

Then, a child’s voice pierced the audience’s collective trance. Some rambunctious toddler, talking about how he was tired or something. World Cafe Live isn’t all that big, so everybody took notice—including the man on stage.

Instead of crumbling under the disruption or callously ignoring it, the man whose W-2 reads “Aaron Livingston” went somewhere in the middle—acknowledging the child, acknowledging the disruption, and letting the audience have a hearty laugh before jumping right back into the song.

An international tour and some festival opening slots later, Son Little is making a triumphant homecoming next Friday, November 13th at Johnny Brenda’s. While there probably won’t be any children there, rest assured this rising soul icon is going to handle any Friday the 13th-level disruptions with just as much humanity, skill, and sheer magnetism.

Son Little plays Johnny Brenda’s next Friday, November 13th. Xenia Rubinos opens. Doors open at 8; show starts at 9:15. Tickets and more information can be found here.

Below, watch Son Little perform “The River” from the XPoNential Music festival this past summer on VuHaus.

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