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Music Reviews: Concerts
Damato @ Harlow's, Sacramento, CA April 25, 2011

Damato wows Sacramento with a passionate set.

DamatoBy Stephanie Mora

Every music fan is different, I think that goes with out saying. We all have different musical tastes and preferences, and that's what makes the world of music go round. However, I think that there is one thing that every single music fan can agree on: We all want to be drawn in by an artist. It doesn't matter what it is that draws us in; it could be the artist's voice, lyrics, stage presence, personality or even just simply because we relate to their story or music; we just want to be drawn in somehow. The quality or qualities that draw us to an artist just might end up being the reason we become long lasting fans..

"You've got to love yourself before you love somebody else."

Now there's a line that will draw you in. Not only does it grab your attention but it also causes you to stop and think. Chances are that every single person can relate to that line in some way. It doesn't matter who you are or what you've experience in life, those words are bound to strike a chord within you.

That just happens to be a lyric from Universal Motown's newly acquired singer/songwriter Damato. To be more specific, it's a lyric from one of his songs "Love Yourself." I know that the very first time I ever heard Damato's music, I was immediately drawn in by his voice and his lyrics. Much like Love Yourself, each of his songs have honest and heartfelt lyrics. Although, I must say that after watching Damato perform live there is one quality he possesses that draws me in even more than his voice or his lyrics, and that is his passion.

It was a rather windy and chilly evening in Sacramento, CA on Monday April 25th, 2011. Given the weather, being inside Harlow's enjoying live music was a pleasant alternative to being outside. Harlow's, located in beautiful downtown Sacramento, has been open for more than 30 years acting as a premier bar, restaurant, night club and music venue. The atmosphere inside was intimate and cozy with rather low lighting. There was an adequate size stage accompanied by a dance floor with tiny tables set up on each side. It was a 21 and over crowd, and there was a good turn out of people who wanted to watch a great show. A great show is exactly what everyone in attendance got.

You know how there are some artists that will make you go "wow?" The minute they start singing you instantly just know that they're going to be good. Damato is 100% one of those artists. Taking center stage, Damato opened the night at Harlow's accompanied by the members of his live band: Aaron (keyboard/guitar), Adam (drums), Jayce (bass) and Jeff (guitar/keyboard). He began with a song entitled There She Goes and it's guaranteed that Damato's voice will make you say "wow." It's that powerful and unique to where it doesn't sound like anyone else. While he belted through his first song, it was easy to see that Damato is a natural on stage. For being a fairly new established artist, he already has a great stage presence. His first performance was all it took to get the crowd involved because by the end of the song people were already clapping and yelling. Next, Damato performed Love Yourself and Run. These two songs really help showcase his songwriting talent and who he is as an artist. Both songs describe feelings that everyone experiences at some point in their lives but they're tied together with positive and uplifting messages. Like I Remember You, the song Damato sang next, was very emotional and changed the atmosphere in the venue. It wasn't just the lyrics of the song but it was Damato's performance. He's not up on the stage just going through the motions, he feels everything he sings. You can see that the lyrics and emotion of each song come from with in him. It's visible in body language and his delivery. Weight Of The World was a song and performance that really portrayed the soulful side of Damato. The performance was uplifting and made you want to snap or clap along to the beat. Closing out his set, Damato sang Funday, Everybody vs. U & Me, and his current single Angels. All of these songs are upbeat, fun and make you want to get out of your chair and dance or at least sway along to the music, yet they still have meaningful lyrics. During these songs Damato really moved and grooved on the stage which was a pleasure to watch. His energy brought life to the songs and to the crowd. At one point during Damato’s opening set he also pulls out a guitar and plays while performing. This shows that he can give the best of both worlds: singing and musicianship. It also must be noted that Damato's live band did an excellent job on each song. Each member of his live band is a true musician and everyone had great chemistry on stage.

After about only a ten minute intermission, main act Hugo took the stage. Hugo is a form of alternative music. He's the perfect mixture of blues, soul and rock n' roll. Hugo kicked off his set with a bang and didn't let up until the show was over. Hugo performed songs from his upcoming album that is due out in May, and fan/crowd favorite cover of Jay Z's 99 Problems. Hugo's voice is deep and soothing and he has a strong stage presence. His set was full of energy all the way through. He got the majority of the crowd up off their feet, dancing to the fun and rockin' music. Although I have to say that my favorite part of Hugo's set was when it was just him, his guitar and the microphone. It really showcased his talent as a front man and gave the crowd a glimpse into the depth of his music.

Together Damato and Hugo put on an incredible show, but this review is more focused on Damato and his set. For being the opener on this tour with Hugo, Damato gets his own fair share of screams and yells, and they are well deserved. Between each of his songs he takes the time to speak to the crowd. He's truly humble and doesn't realize how good he actually is. There is one thing that is astoundingly clear after watching Damato perform a full set: he is full of passion. He's passionate about his music and it shows in his performances. Along with passion comes heart. In the music industry today, I feel that too many artists don't have enough passion or heart and seeing an artist that possesses both is refreshing. Damato was meant to make music. He was meant to perform. He's already a great performer. He will only get better with more experience and given that he's already this good, Damato will be one to watch in the music world. If you have any doubt, just watch his live performances and know that he is also a caring and humble individual. He doesn't realize that he's good, great even. But I full heartedly believe that he is going to be the next big thing, and the rest of Musiqtone agrees.

Be sure to check out Damato's music and I highly suggest checking him out when he's in a city near you. His debut album on Universal Motown is due out sometime this year.

For more information visit:

And if you haven't already get to know Damato better in our interview with him:
Video Montage
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