Sammy Rae & The Friends and Julia Pratt level up with love in a Valentine's Day Fillmore gig - WXPN | Vinyl At Heart
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Both Sammy Rae & The Friends and Philly’s Julia Pratt stood on the precipice of milestones at the Fillmore Wednesday night. With 13 singles out in total, headliner Sammy Rae & The Friends will be releasing their very first full length album next month. Julia Pratt checked off playing on the Fillmore stage with bubbly gratitude she expressed to the crowd. Celebrating these markers fell on Valentine’s Day, it’ll be hard for the artist’s, and the crowd, to forget the date.

Julia Pratt | photo by Megan Matuzak for WXPN

“Has anyone ever been the problem in the relationship?” Julia asked the crowd, hands from the crowd rapidly shot up. She lightheartedly said she could relate so she wrote a song about it.

Called “Julia, Baby,” off her 2023 EP Two To Tango, it finds Pratt taking the voice of the other person in the relationship stuck in a sad narrative loop. After singing, “It’s not your heart you’re holding, it’s mine” to the Fillmore crowd, Julia’s heart-wrenching vocals cut deep. Later, that current was felt again during the rippling melodies of “Would It Kill Ya.”

In honor of the holiday, Julia Pratt covered “Fever” by Peggy Lee. Her take on Lee’s song Wednesday night was dynamic and captivating, it did the notoriously seductive song justice. Joined by guitarist Eric McGarry on guitar, Satchel Schwartz on Drums and Pete Dennis on bass, Julia Pratt’s performance at the Fillmore was further evidence of her growing stature in the music scene.

Sammy Rae and the Friends | photo by Megan Matuzak for WXPN

Sammy Rae & The Friends CAMP Tour is dedicated to the tried and true elements of going out to the woods to pitch a tent and roast marshmallows. The stage was decorated with tree stumps, a drink cooler, camping chair, bits of moss and foliage growing around the stage and a  road post, boards pointing the way to various cities. The Friends entered the stage with lanterns leading the way single file, once they found camp the show could begin.

Sammy Rae’s microphone stand was covered in friendship bracelets and those weird bead lizard keychains everyone has made at some point in their lives. Festively, they wore a pink tie dye shirt with a heart on it.  As to be expected from a Sammy Rae & The Friends show, the stage exploded with hyper pop energy the very instant the group of seven started playing. Wednesday night at the Fillmore “Talk It Up” off The Good Life EP lit that fuse.

Sammy Rae and the Friends | photo by Megan Matuzak for WXPN

The Fillmore crowd got a sample tasting of what is to come from the new album via a few new songs which Sammy Rae & The Friends sprinkled into the set. Sammy introduced one called “Luck of the Draw” and later, “Thieves.”  Everyone in the packed house could feel how excited the band was performing the very catchy and animated tracks, it’s clear that Sammy Rae & The Friends are ready to make some moves.

Sammy Rae & The Friends have been ending the CAMP Tour sets with a satisfying and simple sing along. The bands latest and 13th single, “Coming Home Song” is a song about resiliency. On Valentine’s Day at CAMP, The Fillmore was filled with the voices of a big Philly crowd led by Sammy Rae who had the biggest smile on their face.

Both artists’ tours are continuing this week, albeit separately. After a week and some opening for The Friends, Pratt has linked up with Mipso and is doing a west coast run that continues Sunday, February 18th at Sacramento’s Goldfield Trading Post; full dates here. Sammy Rae & The Friends continue the CAMP tour at The National in Richmond, Virginia tonight, with Erin & The Wildfire now opening; get those dates here and see photos from The Fillmore below.

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