Liam Bailey is the type of artist that makes our jobs easy at the Tiny Desk. I can imagine him arriving at NPR

Liam Bailey is the type of artist that makes our jobs easy at the Tiny Desk. I can imagine him arriving at NPR headquarters early, guitar in tow, ready to bang out a three-song set in one take as staffers gather, fireside chat-style. That’s what his home concert felt like. Wiping the sweat from his brow between songs, he exclaims, “We’re not doing no studio productions. We’re keeping it real. Keeping it raw.”

Perched atop an amplifier in front the peeling walls of his living room, he presents three selections from his latest album, Ekundayo, accompanied by one acoustic guitar. Ekundayo, which means “sorrows become joy” in Yoruba, fittingly describes the Nottingham, England, native’s music industry journey thus far. After various projects and record deals (including a stint on Lioness Records, the imprint founded by Amy Winehouse), he found it impossible to operate under the confines of a major label. He finally found the liberation he yearned for on Leon Michels’s Big Crown Records, which released Ekundayo last November. For this performance, Bailey teeters between belting and crooning, with emotions that ignite the screen from the top of “Fight” to the closing notes of “Paper Tiger.”

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SET LIST
“Fight”
“Vixit”
“Paper Tiger”
MUSICIANS
Liam Bailey: vocals, guitar
CREDITS
Video: Carl.TV, Double3productions, Reuben Blosch
Audio: Will Berridge
TINY DESK TEAM
Producer: Bobby Carter
Video Producer: Kara Frame
Audio Mastering: Josh Rogosin
Tiny Production Team: Bob Boilen, Maia Stern
Executive Producer: Lauren Onkey
Senior VP, Programming: Anya Grundmann

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