Biig Piig Returns To Los Angeles To A Sold Out Echo Thoughts+Photos: Biig Piig at The Echo 3/2/23
LOS ANGELES, CA- When I offered a friend of mine an extra ticket I got to see Biig Piig at The Echo, her response was, “This will probably be the last time she performs in a venue that small again.” I could only agree.
Now, to be honest, my exposure to Jess Smyth’s (that’s Biig Piig’s born-name) music is somewhat limited. I’ve only really been listening to her music for about half a year when her song “Picking Up” popped up in one of my playlists… probably because I was already a fan of Deb Never and Deb Never is featured on the track. But the numbers don’t lie. Her Spotify account has multiple singles that have racked up over 10 million listens.
I went down the Biig Piig rabbit hole and gave her latest release, Bubblegum a spin. I was digging it. With its hip lo-fi approach to production and Jess’ soothingly smoky vocals with soul, hip-hop and indie pop flavors sprinkled throughout, it was an album I could easily press-play on and just let it run. There are plenty of young adult themes in the music, with songs touching on topics like love, heartbreak and self-discovery, and with a voice like Jess’ it’s hard not to feel all of the emotions that she’s trying to convey.
Biig Piig’s live performance was a ton of fun. There’s something about the way she carries herself on stage that really resonates with fans. There was an effortless, human, way that she connected with the sold-out crowd at The Echo. I can’t quite put my finger on how she did it, but she created this real sense of intimacy in the room. Granted, The Echo isn’t the largest venue in LA, but it truly felt like a room of familiars. Perhaps it was just the personal nature of her music. Perhaps it was the way she interacted with fans in the crowd between songs. Perhaps it was just look of pure joy on her face for being back in Los Angeles performing at a venue that she used to live a few blocks from for the first time. Whatever it was, Biig Piig has an authentic type of charisma that’s just draws you in.
I still need to dig a little deeper into her music, but I also noticed that Jess’ fans were locked in to every word that she was singing. How could I not notice when I could hear the fans standing next to me singing along to hooks or important lines in the melody. After the performance, I decided to look up Jess’ background in music. WIkipedia pointed out that Biig Piig has a history in underground rap, and was involved in the London underground rap and grime scenes as a teenager. Ah, it all makes sense. Jess is and has been a writer from the jump. I’d venture to guess that her experience in rap and grime scene really honed her skills when it came to writing memorable melodic lines.
The whole performance was a treat. From her irrepressible smile, to her endless energy bouncing back and forth across the stage, to all of her music that had me bobbing my head to the beat throughout the performance (which made me miss certain shots because I couldn’t hold my camera still), this was about as good of a first impression I’ve ever had. And to throw in a surprise guest (Deb Never) to boot? Double stars.
Biig Piig will be touring Europe through September, but I’m hoping she’ll reroute back to the states sooner rather than later. You should too. You should catch her live.
- Show Intro
- This Is What They Meant/ Don’t Turn
- Rose And Gold
- Oh No
- In The Dark
- American Beauty
- Picking Up
- Feels Right