Lea Manor High School in Luton was host to An Audience with Joe McElderry last night. MP! went along to the performing arts college to see the show and get the goss on Joe’s forthcoming album Here’s What I Believe.
The show was an intimate affair, with an audience of 200 treated to an acoustic set of some of Joe’s best known songs with a few surprise covers thrown in, and the opportunity to quiz the Popstar to Operastar winner on any topic of their choice.
After a brilliant support set from up-and-comer Tich, Joe took to the stage with his X Factor winners’ song ‘The Climb’, followed by ‘Solitaire’ and a cover of ‘Part of Me’ by Katy Perry.
Then it was time for questions, and Joe talked about the differences between singing in opera and pop styles, what he was like at school (hard-working but talkative!) and writing for his new album (a return to his original pop sound!). He also couldn’t resist telling us about Hugo – his new pet rabbit.
A cover of Lady Antebellum’s ‘Need You Now’ and first audition song ‘Dance With My Father’ were followed by ‘Someone Wake Me Up’, during which Joe forgot a few of his lyrics. Oops!
Fan-favourite ‘If You Love Me’ provided an opportunity for a singalong, and ‘Superman’ was a fantastic showcase for Joe’s vocals, which have only improved since we first saw him back in 2009.
The last portion of the show was “Joe Jukebox”, in which members of the audience shouted out requests. Joe sang covers of Lady Gaga’s ‘Telephone’ and Beyoncé tracks such as ‘Crazy In Love’, ‘Love On Top’ AND ‘Listen’ (he’s a fan of Ms Knowles!). Even a bizarre request for Peter Andre’s ‘Mysterious Girl’ was fulfilled.
Finally, the South Shields boy gave us an exclusive two-line snippet from a brand new ballad, but didn’t go so far as to give away the title, worrying that he’d get in trouble with his record label.
We’re really excited about Mr McElderry’s return to pop and can’t wait to hear what he’s got in store with album number 4!
Oh and today is his 21st birthday – Happy Birthday, Joe!
Here’s What I Believe is out on 10 September.