On August 27th, 2021, English singer-songwriter Maisie Peters released her debut record, “You Signed Up For This.” Though her debut album was only released last year, Peters isn’t technically the new kid on the block. She started uploading videos of her music to Youtube in 2017 at fifteen. Then accumulated half a billion streams worldwide and sold out iconic venues in London, all before she released an album. She released two EPs with Atlantic Records, “Dressed Too Nice for a Jacket” and “It’s Your Bed Babe, It’s Your Funeral,” and, before the pandemic, was lined up to open for Niall Horan on tour. But, with the worldwide shutdown, she had the opportunity to work on her album. “You Signed Up For This” charted at number 2 in the UK, and on March 1, 2022, Peters began her month-long North American tour.
Thanks to Spotify, I discovered Maisie and her narrative songwriting talent over the last few years. I had made the switch from Apple Music to Spotify in mid-July of 2020 and began listening to the daily curated personal playlists. I started to notice Maisie and her songs were resonating with me. She sang of heartbreak, love, and all the feelings that go along with the rollercoaster of emotions when it comes to romance. Soon enough, more of her music was finding its way onto my playlists. When she released the soundtrack to Apple TV’s “Trying” season 2, I became fully invested in the songs and the show (I binged both seasons not long after listening to the album). After the release of “John Hughes Movie” in February of 2021, followed not long after by “Psycho,” the anticipation for the album was incredibly high. Then, when she announced the tour, I was all in.
I had purchased two tickets to tour because I wanted to experience it with a friend despite being okay with going alone. I had my sister tag along, which worked out because she now claims to be a bigger fan than I am. I had found the setlist for Maisie’s show on Twitter about a week or so before the New York date, so I made it into a playlist to prepare my sister and me for our show. I’m not a huge fan of general admission shows due to all the standing around before the show even starts, but those are also the most intimate. I wasn’t 100% sure how the crowd would be, so I planned to be at the venue at least 45 minutes before the doors opened. I wanted to secure a decent spot in the crowd; I think it elevates the experience. If I have to stand all night, I might as well be close to the stage. We ended up with third-row center spots, and I was pleased to see a lot of fans were, if not my age, only slightly younger. As I near 30, I find being with fans that aren’t in their 20s less than appealing to attend shows with.
Jonah Kagen opened up the show, a singer-songwriter I hadn’t heard of previously, but he impressed me by the end of his set. He knew how to work the crowd and already seemed to have fans in the audience. Being an opener can be challenging because you’re essentially playing for a group that is most likely only being introduced to you as you walk onto the stage. But Jonah and his band mate’s effortlessly interacted with and energized us as they played their set and got us ready for the night ahead.
Music played over the speakers as we all waited in anticipation. The last song before the start of her set was “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” by Taylor Swift, and being that it wasn’t a Taylor Swift show, I was thrilled that the entire venue sang along to the entirety of the song. It was an incredibly cathartic experience. As the lights went out, we watched one of Maisie’s tour vlogs which played the title track, “You Signed Up For This,” that we all sang along to, preparing for her grand entrance. As the 21-year-old took the stage, beaming and making her way to the microphone, the entire crowd erupted and immediately broke out into song. It was like that practically the whole show. Every person in that venue knew every word, and it baffles me how young she is, yet her lyrics encapsulate a wide range of listeners. My sister and I are a great example of this; she is 20, and I am 28. Peters was just as excited to share her intimate songs with us as we were to hear them. She is a pop star, and this is just the beginning.
Her performance was as bold and therapeutic as I’m sure writing the lyrics to some of her most personal songs are. She flipped her hair, bounced around the stage, and gave the audience a hint of sass whenever the music called for it. A natural performer, she engaged the crowd throughout her set: she even took a moment to hear a heartbreak tale from a fan in the crowd to dedicate a song to. Her stage presence and command of the audience were thrilling to witness. Peters is no stranger to social media, constantly interacting with fans on Twitter and leaking her songs on TikTok. She’s been vlogging the tour journey and capturing every fun moment on Instagram. So, being at the show felt more like seeing an old friend, which made the experience that much more personal.
I can’t wait to see where this album takes her, especially after her European tour as the opener for Ed Sheeran this summer!
Setlist for Webster Hall:
You Signed Up For This
Place We Were Made
Love Him I Don’t
Sad Girl Summer
I’m Trying (Not Friends)
Pretty Girls Like Star Signs (Acoustic)
Worst of You
John Hughes Movie (Encore)