The weather in Bourges was so sunny, warm and summery and can’t express how lovely it felt. Only April but Le Printemps de Bourges had a perfect summer festival feeling! So lovely. It was good to see many familiar people and also meet some new. A couple of people I talked to knew who I was because they had read my blog! Of course it can happen because I share a lot of pictures but it’s still a surprise to hear someone actually reads my silly stories, lol! Thank you so much for visiting and reading my blog. It’s always a pleasure to meet people in real life.

I have seen many French gigs and festivals so they almost feel like “home”. You know what I mean, even I don’t speak French the atmosphere is so familiar. And some things never change! You never know when it’s time for a little chaos! People, especially French Mika fans, are really helpful though and in the end everything is usually fine. This time many things went so not my way. I accidentally ate something I shouldn’t and felt really ill before the show. Going in to the venue was a total chaos and the security took my cheap little camera (which was totally unfair because everyone else could keep their cameras, even big system cameras) and it kind of ruined my mood (not because I need pictures but because I love taking photos and especially festivals can offer a good opportunity to take a lot of concert photos). With pure luck we still ended up in front row, I took a few painkillers for my headache and decided to enjoy the festival. It was time to test how live Mika magic really works.

We still had to wait for hours until Mika was on stage and I didn’t know any of the other performers so didn’t know what to expect. The first artist for the night, Mélissa Laveaux, wasn’t bad and seemed to try hard, but her music was simply too boring for my taste and I didn’t much enjoy it. The second artist was Jamie Cullum and even he is too jazzy for me I still liked his warm voice and found him hugely charismatic and energetic on stage. I enjoyed listening to his performance and I couldn’t properly see Jamie when he was behind the piano but I had a perfect view to his extremely good-looking guitarist, lucky me. Seen the picture Jamie Cullum tweeted? Adorable! More points to Jamie. Benjamin Biolay wasn’t that boring and old I assumed after hearing some descriptions (girls, he is younger than I am!!) but his smoking took all my attention. What kind of an artist is smoking during the whole performance? I was explained it’s his usual style and I guess it’s meant to be sexy but it just looked so wrong (even I can’t be sure what he was smoking, hopefully basic cigarettes). Benjamin Biolay had a special guest on stage during one of his songs, a young, apparently famous, rap artist and the locals seemed to enjoy the surprise.

Finally it was Mika’s turn. His show was average/basic the way you expect a random French festival between special, rare tours to be but it was still his usual, high quality and he had great energy. We were in France so Doriand was on stage with him during Karen and EMD, something I had hoped for, and I really enjoyed it. Tim did a ukulele intro for Karen (probably to add something extra and a new “toy”) and I prefer the usual beginning but Karen was still absolutely the highlight of the show for me. Lola is getting better show after show and Underwater is naturally one of my favorites every time but this time I especially loved the high-energy songs in the end of the show: EMD, Drunk, LT, WAG (was great to see LT with the whole band and the guitar playing in the end of it, my fav part).

The audience wasn’t the best possible (basic festival audience) but it was still good – every audience in France seems to love Mika – and after a few songs he managed to warm people up to sing along and the atmosphere was good and got even better towards the end of the show and he decided to sing the beautiful new French song he did in NA. I was happy to hear it for the first time, and I can’t understand the lyrics but I really enjoyed the melody and his lovely soft voice. The French fans had colorful butterfly confetti for Lola and some tiny golden confetti for Love Today and Mika played with both (putting butterflies on his face and throwing golden confetti on Max and Curtis) and it was quite funny and soon after our little confetti rain the whole venue was filled with Mika’s golden confetti (in the end of WAG as usual) and I loved watching the circus part of his show and oh, my headache was gone! I probably smiled continuously since the curtains opened and the band came on stage until the show was over and the curtains closed again, which was momentarily sad even the happy memory stays. I loved watching Tim (didn’t see him in NA) and I didn’t pay any attention to the new drummer, whoever he is, until the show was already over so I guess he did just fine and I wonder how many new drummers we’ll see this summer.

After the show I had confetti all over my clothes and face and every part of my body (surprisingly sticky!). We saw Mika a bit later I finally had an opportunity to say thank you for the NA tour, and I love it how he seems to realize how good and special it really was (and that gives me faith in his future plans). He was kind and smiling – a very nice way to end the festival. A huge thank you to the French fans who helped me once again with everything making my trip so easy and everyone I chatted with during the day!

The setlist

Grace Kelly

Toy Boy

Lollipop

Blue Eyes

Billy Brown

Popular

Drunk

Only Lonely Man

Underwater

SITM

EMD

Make You Happy

Hia Leah

Origin

BG

Century Man

Celebrate

Relax

Love Today

OMS

Not totally sure about the order but the setlist for Mika’s LA show at El Rey Theater was more or less like above. Filming was not allowed so I didn’t take any videos, but there are some clips uploaded on Youtube (not his wish, but very difficult to avoid, and way too tempting for fans not to watch). As the links for the vids are listed on his official fan club forum (and even tweeted by GW) I linked a few videos to the songs on the setlist above (and again, if you filmed the videos and don’t want them linked here, just let me know). Black and white videos for some songs are amazingly beautiful and great quality!

The highlight of the show was definitely Make You Happy performed together with Greg Wells. Any album version can’t possibly compete with this stunning acoustic performance, it was extremely powerful and so full of emotion and he was singing every word like meaning it, I loved it. Also, it was so heart-warming to hear Mika’s producer’s words about him, I felt so lucky to be there and see them performing together.

Beside MYH the most beautiful songs were (once again) Underwater, OMS and Hia Leah. Mika’s voice is simply perfect for the songs and – as I’ve said in every post – in a brilliant shape. Loving the way Curtis is playing in the beginning of UW and OMS (I think the instrument is called melodica, just correct me if I’m wrong) and Max singing like an angel in OMS and Hia Leah. Of course I knew he is a good singer and I’ve heard him before but I never realized his voice is this pretty! The simple setting makes it so effortless to hear their voices and every different instrument. No female backing vocalist needed. I can so perfectly understand why he decided to do the tour together with Max and Curtis. Such a special setting and I must say I don’t miss the band around him at all.

Also, loving some new details they’ve added to several songs: church style intro for Popular, tapping in SITM, Saxophone for Billy Brown (not new, but we can hear it so much better now) and energetic drumming in several songs (Lollipop, LT, Only Lonely Man, Century Man). My biggest favorite on the setlist is the new song Century Man. It’s classic (somehow Beatles style) and full of energy (omg, listen to around 1:55, 2:55). I can hardly handle how awesome it is, I haven’t heard anything like this for a very long time. Acoustic Relax is always like a dream, but you know how it is with the most famous songs… The audience is singing so much it’s difficult to really enjoy his voice. Still beautiful as always.

The venue was intimate and quite fancy. The audience was a bit different than usually, imo, (lot of VIPs and special guests, Mika joked about them and thanked people he works with) but still loud and energetic. I went to see the gig alone but managed to find Sivan and another MFCer at the venue (thanks for your company, girls!) and we had a chat after the show. I’ve seen some great LA reviews, especially loved the words by a local music siteMany moments found me thinking about how absolutely adorable he is, and so completely unassuming about his own career and success that you just want to throw love at him. Oh, that’s him, I totally agree. I’ve always wanted to see a Mika show in LA, definitely worth traveling.