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  • Writer's pictureJan Böttcher

Life's For the Living, So Live It: Passenger Brings the Berlin Crowd to Life.

On July 4th Passenger brought so much more than just his music to Tempodrom in the heart of Kreuzberg, Berlin on his All the little lights World Tour. Packing the venue from the barricade up to the last rows the crowd anticipates the moment Passenger to step foot on the stage. Right on time – at nine in the evening – the lights dim, and the screaming starts. You can immediately tell how experienced the Englishman is judging by the relaxed demeanor he carries himself onto stage with - in front of thousands of people - alone. Just him and his guitar.

He opens the concert with a laid-back song that is immediately adored by all of his fans. Some in groups, others alone sway to the heartfelt way Passenger, whose real name is Michael “Mike” David Rosenberg, strums his guitar strings. After finishing the first song he takes time to address his fans with heartfelt words, thanking them for coming (even through some might only know “Let her go”) and explaining that this is the biggest crowd he has ever played in front of in Berlin. He even cracks a joke about how his artist name may make it seem like he’s a band, when really, he’s standing up there on his own.

Despite him saying he might not be the best to bring the crowd to dance as he’s written mostly sad songs about heartbreak and self-doubt, he captures the crowd’s attention in a beautiful way. Five songs into his set he covers “Sound of Silence” by Simon and Garfunkel, adding an anecdote about playing the same cover in a pub with no one listening years ago and a little boy coming up to him saying it was his best song. But he seems to have taken that well as he still sings the song and doesn’t seem to get tired of telling the story.

Of course, Let Her Go became one of the most memorable moments of the evening. Having remained mostly silent throughout the night, captured by the art of guitar playing and singing, the crowd comes alive to sing with Mike. By him cheering on the crowd the room gets louder and louder with every passing word until there’s barely anyone left who’s not singing his most famous song. It was incredible to see all these individuals be connected through that one thing, merging into a mass of people who come undone in this short period of time.

When Passenger leaves stage the crowd falls into silence, hoping for him to come back and keep the moment alive for a little bit longer. For three more songs Mike reappears, once again being met with adoration by his fans.

As soon as Mike’s gone for good and the lights come back on again, it’s evident that for most people, this will be a core memory they will cherish for a long time coming.

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