Sara Bareilles – Amidst the Chaos Live from the Hollywood Bowl (Download Free album Zip)
Sara Bareilles’ singer-songwriter and acting sides both get a workout this month. On May 6, she debuts on Peacock’s “Girls5eva,” a Tina Fey-executive-produced comedy about a late-’90s girl group whose 40-something members reunite after their ancient hit gets sampled in a hip-hop song. And she’s back on more familiar show business turf — albeit what was at the time a new headlining venue for her — on the album “Amidst the Chaos: Live at the Hollywood Bowl,” out May 21.
You’re a New Yorker now, but you chose to commemorate your recent tour with a live album from the Bowl, not Madison Square Garden. Why?
The Bowl was my very first experience of live music as a new UCLA student. My college roommate and I went to see Faith Hill and Deana Carter; we sat in the cheapest seats at the very top, and it was transcendent. The Bowl has so much warmth, and envelops you in the canyon. That’ll forever be an imprinted memory about the possibility of Los Angeles as a new place in my life. As I was getting started, playing Molly Malone’s, Genghis Cohen and Hotel Cafe, I forever imagined that place. And Nov. 2, 2019, we got it on the boards. I literally could look out at the audience and see lots of people who had seen me at Hotel cafe or even UCLA Bruin Plaza, who had been watching me on stage for 15, 20 years at this point. So there was a sense of like, “Oh guys, we did it.” It was kind of sweet and wholesome in a way, where it felt like this was a big deal for all of us.
Scheduling a show for November at the Bowl can be a big risk. You mention “warmth,” but that was the coldest outdoor concert I ever attended.
The temperature was miserable. Looking back, it makes me laugh because it was the universe reminding me not to take myself too seriously. I literally was doing squats in the back and then running across the stage, trying to increase blood flow, because I was playing wrong notes on the keys. But even though I was very cold onstage, the warmth of that experience was not eclipsed by that at all.
To promote the live album, you’re taking to your YouTube channel [May 7 at 4 p.m. PT] to stream a fresh mini-set that you just filmed at the Hollywood Bowl, with no audience. What was it like to go from headlining the Bowl a year and a half ago with a full house to headlining it now with no house?