Review: Dessa makes a connection

Caitlin Earnshaw and Victoria Giomi

On January 16, Dessa took the stage at the Chapel in San Francisco. Dessa is a singer, rapper, and writer, and a member of the indie hip hop band, Doomtree. She sang in a classical-rap fusion with breaks to express her poetry. A band named Monakr opened for her and even helped during the main set. Both artists brought an amazing feel to the audience. They developed a special connection that went further than music. Almost everyone in the crowd, which included fans from many different walks of life, knew the songs. The crowd was receptive, conversing with her, singing along, and following the story her performance brought. 

In many shows, it seems obvious that the artist is there to share their talent and work their gig. This was not the case for Dessa. She took the stage with a purpose, a story to share and a message to spread. She told this through poetry and song. The audience related, approving the messages in their sways back and forth and the routine clapping at the end of each song.

With this type of experience, the venue was perfect. It gave space for the audience to be receiving a “sermon-like” show in an untraditional way. The intimate venue allowed everyone’s feelings to collide and support the music. Everything about the performance seemed planned out, but at the same time spontaneous and sporadic. 

The opener, Monakr, took a different role. Some knew them and were familiar with their music, but many were experiencing their style for the first time. They were such relatable hosts. They held conversations, invited responses much like their night’s counterpart, Dessa. 

Overall, this music event was an experience like no other. It was lightly political, heavily intimate, inviting, and overall inspirational and motivating.

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