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Burgeoning from of SoundCloud in 2016, Sabrina Claudio has been steadily making a name for herself in the R&B/Soul space by consistently releasing amazing music, pouring her heart/soul into her songwriting, and experimenting with her sound. She pushes the bounds on edgier dance beats and hip-hop collaborations. A few collaborations that introduced me to her were "All My Love" (with Wale) and "Don’t Let Me Down" (with Khalid). These slightly-more-upbeat collaborations served as the gateway to the rest of her catalog, introducing me to the world of emotionally vulnerable soulful music. I credit Sabrina Claudio for expanding my musical palate into these subgenres, so when I saw that her Based On A Feeling Tour had a sold out stop at House of Blues in Anaheim, CA, I knew this was one I had to experience. Let’s hop into a few of my highlights of the night.  

Kicking off the night in Anaheim was Trip Carter. The Southern California native took to the stage and introduced himself as not only the opener for the night but highlighted that he’ll be sticking out all night as part of Sabrina’s supporting band. Armed with a bass guitar, Trip Carter put on a dope opening set bending the genre-defining rules of hip hop and setting the tone for Sabrina Claudio. As he neared the end of his set, he hyped up the crowd for the main act to follow. The lights cut for a short intermission.

After a short period, a massive spotlight shone through the center of the golden arch. To thunderous applause and cheers, Sabrina Claudio walked out directly in front of the spotlight creating a harsh silhouette of her body as she made her way out to the stage. Leading with chart toppers like "Belong To You" (feat. 6lack), I saw individual faces in the crowd light up in massive amounts of joy. I prepped a little for this concert by giving her records Truth Is and Based On A Feeling full spins front to back a couple of times each. Her music is generally very soulful and low tempo, but the addition of the live band really kicked into a higher gear than I expected. Some other notable moments that pushed me from swaying back and forth into almost full dance mode were “Confidently Lost”, “Problem With You”, and “Unravel Me”. In addition to the music, Claudio snapped out of her stage persona in between songs and connected with the audience on a surprisingly relatable level. Considering the serious undertone of her music, I was very impressed when she would crack jokes and take selfies with the crowd using their phones. These small moments in the night reminded us that despite the serious tone in her music, she’s still just a regular 26-year-old girl.

All in all, Sabrina Claudio absolutely killed it at her Orange County stop on the Based On A Feeling Tour. Her performance exemplifies sensual intimacy, deep emotions, and a very authentic energy that you don’t want to miss. This tour continues through the west and the south, and then travels internationally through Sweden, Denmark, France, Belgium, Netherlands, United Kingdom, and ending in Ireland. If this queen has a stop on the rest of the tour near you, get your tickets now. They may be sold by the time she reaches you!

Kris Kuganathan

Photojournalist - Orange County

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