Material: Kicking off the North American leg of her 2020 virtual world tour and the release of her upcoming album, Ricochet, Hayley Sales delivered her livestream show from her parents’ blueberry farm on Vancouver Island, playing the piano she learned on as a child and singing into her vintage 1920s AEA ribbon mic (a gift from her uncle). A Judy Garland buff from a very early age, the feel of her show is similar to Norah Jones-meets-Duffy, with the vocal delivery of one of the greats. Sales’ trademark retro jazz sound, gentle demeanor, and consummate professionalism came across as polished and powerful but with just enough spice to keep up the intrigue.
Musicianship: Show opener “Never Let You Go” was a perfect introduction to Sales’ dreamy vibrato and captivating vocals, followed by the darker lines and taffy-pulling lyrics of “Let Me Fall Apart”––her aptly-dubbed “quarantine song.” Showing more musical diversity with her new single, “All Shook Up,” Sales included some great scat moments, while sharing a more pop sound and “Get You Alone” offered the listener some upbeat, Peggy Lee-style sass. With solid piano playing and a stylistically diverse musical delivery, her performance was elevated even more by her incredible lyricism. With a great use of space throughout the show and a brilliant interplay of storyline tension and melodic delivery, Sales demonstrates a clear commitment to a perfect blend of sound and performance.
Performance: Sales covers topics ranging from love, compromise, and compassion in “Take The Morning,” with its ghosted lines and powerful torch notes, to the humility and humanity of “Poor,” “All This Love” and “Never Far.” All three tunes combine a molasses feel with simple, heartfelt messaging and a stunning stretch of notes and melodies that create a compelling tension. “I Don’t Believe” speaks to Sales’ compassion and ideal vision of humanity, and “Right At The End” offers an inspiring story of tenacity, each song highlighting Sales’ ability to communicate even the most vulnerable of emotions. She also shared her as yet unreleased tune, “Rearranging,” co-written with Sharon Stone.
Summary: With an innate musical and storytelling ability and a willingness to unabashedly emote through her lyricism and vocal stylings, Hayley Sales delivered an animated and engaging show, demonstrating stunning vocal tone, warmth, and overall ability. Sales boasts an incredible vocal command and wraps you up in a journey of sound: a lovely escape from the worries of the world.