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The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
Since 1888
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.

‘Darling, where have you been?’: Amelia Day’s concert at Exit/In

Amelia Day and opener Girls Night rocked Exit/In for a full crowd of fans and friends.
George Albu
Amelia Day performing at Exit/In while illuminated by orange lighting, as photographed on April 17, 2024. (Hustler Multimedia/George Albu)

Vanderbilt’s own Amelia Day brought her pop-funk music and stellar stage presence to Exit/In on April 17 for a concert that seemed to delight the full crowd of fans and friends.

Day has been on quite a roll these past few months. In Nov. 2023, she released her EP “Little One,” and she recently played some of her songs for The Hustler’s Tiny Dorm Concert. Now, before a sister show in Asheville, NC in May, she performed at Exit/In here in Nashville.

The show was opened by Girls Night, a local Nashville band that got the audience pumped up for the night. From the moment all of the band members walked onstage in colorful tutus, sunglasses and a variety of fun hats and headbands, I knew I was in for a treat. The lead singer, Mitch Krueger, introduced their song “Party Planet.”

“This is one of them ‘throw your a– songs, so if you don’t have any a, find your friends and borrow some,” Krueger said.

The band featured both trumpet and saxophone players in addition to the traditional band set, which added funk and groove to their sound and made Exit/In into a fun dance club experience. All of their songs featured super cool bass lines, and as anyone who knows me can tell you, I am not immune to a talented bassist.

Throughout their set, the band took moments to feature all of their members with solos performed on each instrument. “Moonlight,” a song that comes out next week, was so groovy that the guitarist’s pretty pink cowboy hat flew off of his head, which he threw into the crowd at the end of their set. Girls Night earned massive cheers from the crowd as they left the stage.

As the lights started to dim in preparation for the start of the main act, the beautiful and peaceful intro music to “Pause” started to play as Amelia Day’s band took the stage. When Day came out to massive applause, I experienced a moment of humor as she had to lower the mic stand for herself. The crowd was completely silent as she began to sing “Pause,” as if the title of the song was working as a command for everyone in the room to slow down and listen to Day’s beautiful vocals fill the space.

After “Pause,” Day quickly brought the energy up with her upbeat tune “Skipping Down the Sidewalk.” Many audience members passionately sang along to the chorus. After that song, she took a moment to introduce her band members and give a shout-out to Girls Night for their opening set. Then, she delighted the audience with a cover of Noah Kahan’s “Dial Drunk,” which perfectly fit her folksy style.

“I don’t know what Noah was on when he wrote that one — apparently alcohol,” Day said.

Day then gave the crowd a listen to an unreleased song called “The Songwriter,” which featured a lot of folk-country, storytelling style of writing. She then played an older tune of hers, “When You Let Down Your Hair,” which her day-one fans cheered for. This song continued the pensive mood from “The Songwriter” that drew everyone into her words.

The Nashville show was in for a special treat when Day brought out her dear friend and collaborator Miki Fiki, a fellow Nashville artist, for their new song, “Sink In,” releasing on May 10.

“I’m just going to sing his praises and he’s just going to have to stand there and take it in his little green jacket,” Day said.

While you’ll have to listen to the song yourself when it comes out, I can assure you that this is an emotional one.

Day recognized the need for a mood-lifter in her set, so she performed “Little One,” the title track of her most recent EP. She assured the crowd by singing “You’re still young,” reminding us all that we had plenty of life left to make mistakes and grow as people. She then went straight into showing off her strong vocals with “Silhouette,” and when she sang the line “Darling, where have you been?” it seemed like she was addressing the crowd itself.

Day followed with a jaw-dropping mashup of Amy Winehouse’s “Back to Black” and “Me and Mr. Jones,” which was an incredible experience. Day added drama and excitement to her show when three of her good friends and fellow Vanderbilt students, Luke Dailey, Nico Zavala and Jordan Haas, came out to sing backing vocals for her for the remainder of the show, earning several cheers from audience members who knew them.

After the wonderful Winehouse medley, Day performed my personal favorite song of hers, “Alma Mater.” She encouraged the audience to sing the bridge with her, which builds up into an explosion of musical excitement. As she ends the bridge with the lyric “I’ll never win,” I found that hard to believe. Based on their lively response to her music and participation in the song, the audience seemed to think of her as a winner.

As Day prepared for her supposed last song, the crowd was sad to see the show end but excited to hear her beloved song “Therapist’s Wet Dream.” The audience appeared to be full of excitement as she closed out her set before leaving the stage. However, the audience cheered and chanted for an encore, and Day obliged and came back out with her band and backup singers.

Day truly closed out her show with “Eastward of Eden,” a folksy and dramatic tune that she brought to another level by turning it into an epic song full of folk, soul and rock and roll. I was definitely not ready to “leave it all behind,” as Day sang in the lyrics.

As Amelia Day prepares to graduate from Vanderbilt, this show was one that I was so glad I did not miss. Along with Girls Night setting the perfect mood for the night, Day’s set was energetic, emotional and full of fun, just like all of her music. Wherever Amelia Day’s musical journey takes her next, I’m excited to be a fan along for the ride.

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About the Contributors
Chloe Whalen
Chloe Whalen, Staff Writer
Chloe Whalen (‘27) is from Herscher, Ill., and is studying communication of science and technology in the College of Arts and Science. She previously served as Deputy Life Editor. In her spare time, she enjoys running, listening to multiple genres of music and podcasts and doing jigsaw puzzles. She can be reached at [email protected].
George Albu
George Albu, Staff Writer and Photographer
George Albu (‘27) is majoring in medicine, health and society in the College of Arts and Science. When not working for The Hustler, he enjoys taking long walks around campus, reading or watching video essays about anything and everything online. He can be reached at [email protected].
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