Hitting the Road with Ali Gatie
The multi-Platinum musician provides an intimate look at his night in New York City.
Ali Gatie has landed in New York City. The 25-year-old musician, best known for his explosive singles and unprecedented collaborations, energized the halls of Hammerstein Ballroom last weekend. This stint marks the musician’s biggest headline tour to date, with stops across the United States and Canada. Among other firsts, this show in the Big Apple also marks a personal high for the musician himself as his biggest show to date. To a crowd of over two thousand people, Ali performed songs from his highly praised album, WHO HURT YOU?. The album, which features 17 tracks, has been streamed over 1.5 billion times. It’s a comprehensive and thoroughly thought through body of work that includes his standout track with Kehlani titled “The Look” and “MMM” with R3HAB–both of which he performed in New York City. In addition to his fan favorites, the musician also performed his new song, “Scared of Love,” out last Friday via Warner Records. For the unsure person in the relationship, Ali soothes. As he does elsewhere in his discography, he simultaneously relates to experiences in our life while easing our relationship worries. The song is lush and electric, all while highlighting Ali’s unique gift–his expansive range and candid vulnerability. And with the new release, Ali sets the stage for the next thrilling chapter of his career.
The week before the single dropped, VMAN sat down with the musician. He also answered our questions about this past year as he shared some of his favorite photos from the night.
VMAN: Hi Ali, thanks for taking the time to chat with us. We know that you were in New York City last weekend. How was that?
AG: It was awesome. It was a surreal moment. Every show is surreal for me. The energy in New York was great, and I can’t wait to come back.
VMAN: We definitely can’t wait to have you back. How would you describe the energy of the crowd?
AG: I love New York. The vibe and the people were great. Definitely felt the love over there.
VMAN: Did you have any time to sightsee and look around the city?
AG: I don’t usually do much before and after shows. I just try to rest and relax. I do like to try the foods from every city. So in New York, I definitely had to grab some Halal Guys.
VMAN: Halal Guys is the best. You definitely hit up the best of the best. So far, what’s been your favorite moment on tour?
AG: I’m still very early into this tour but have had a lot of great moments. Hearing the fans sing my songs is always crazy, but when I actually get to meet them and hear their stories, that’s my favorite part.
VMAN: That sounds amazing. And do you have a favorite song to perform?
AG: I love to perform all my songs because my fans are singing every single one. It’s definitely amazing to perform the songs like “Can’t Lie” and “Moonlight” because I made those songs when I had no fans, and now people are singing them word for word.
VMAN: Yeah, for sure. And I checked your Instagram and found that you take a photo of the crowd every night. That’s such a great ritual. Why do you do this?
AG: I always say my fans are like my family, and so I like to take family photos every show. Selfies have always kind of been my thing. My most liked pictures would always be regular chill selfies of myself. I’m all about being organic, and even before I was big, I would be posting selfies, and my fans loved it.
VMAN: Yeah, the tour selfies are epic. What do you love most about performing?
AG: I love hearing my fans sing my songs and seeing people’s emotions and how my songs have touched them. It makes all the hard work feel important.
VMAN: Some of the other artists we’ve spoken to have specific pre-show rituals, while others are more lowkey. How do you usually get ready for a show?
AG: My pre-show is really simple. I do more vocal warm-ups and I like to have my time to myself before I get on stage, clear my mind, and give my fans the best show I can. A lot of positive affirmations to try to kill the nerves, saying things like, “I was born for this!”
VMAN: We love a good positive affirmation. Will definitely have to try that one out. I also saw that you’re about to come out with “Scared of Love” this week. What’s that song about?
AG: It’s a song about someone who is scared of love, and I’m telling them even if they might not believe in love anymore because of what they’ve been through, I’m asking them to believe in me instead.
VMAN: And what message do you hope listeners take away from the project?
AG: I just want people to feel heard; heartbreak can make you feel lonely and I feel my songs can be therapy to some of the listeners.
VMAN: That’s beautiful. As we round out 2022, what are your intentions for the new year? What are you looking to do?
AG: I really want to focus on putting out more music this next year–like a lot. Hopefully, I can put out another album and go on another tour and go overseas.
If you weren’t able to catch Ali in New York, he still has eight cities to visit—including Chicago, Detroit, and Minneapolis. For more details, click here.