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Santa Monica Pier Concert Series Kicks off with Contrasting Views of Teen Years


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By Lookout Staff

May 19, 2017 -- The 33rd Annual Twilight Concert Series on the Santa Monica Pier kicks off Thursday night by celebrating both the bittersweet moments of a teenager's everyday life and expressing the painful sense of loss.

The contrasting views are offered by headliner Khalid, a 19-year-old singer-songwriter whose paeans to teenage-hood embrace Uber and Twitter, and the opening act Bibi Bourelly, an Indie Pop songwriter whose songs chronicle her life on the streets of Berlin.

Khalid uses "a kaleidoscope of glitch-y soul-driven cinematic 21st century pop" to celebrate such rites of passage as "the first moment behind the wheel, the first taste of freedom, and the first experience of love," concert promoters said.

Khalid (Image courtesy of Khalid)

His full-length debut album, American Teen is "the story of your average teenager going through a typical day in high school,” Khalid says. “In this day and age, young people face a lot of hardships, whether they’re mental problems, relationship problems or problems with simply facing reality.

"I wanted to address that in a language someone younger than me can relate to, but that can also translate to somebody a bit older. High school was the same situation every day, but with a slightly different story.”

On the eve of his graduation, Khalid, who traveled the world as the son of a military mother, made a splash with the album’s breakout single “Location.”

The song generated more than 26.5 million Spotify streams and 4 million YouTube views, landing him a major label deal with Right Hand Music Group/RCA Records.

Two years older than Khalid, Berlin-born Bibi Bourelly -- who has written tunes for Selena Gomez, Rihanna and Usher -- offers a sound that "is a balancing act of tough, wise worldliness and vulnerability," promoters said.

after her mother's death from cancer, Bourelly took to the streets of Berlin, "hanging out on rooftops and subways, ultimately getting into trouble with her friends."

"I got to see the world from a rat's perspective, from a little person's perspective," she said.

Bourelly relays her experiences in a voice that "is soulful -- powerful but rough, a little frayed around the edges like the morning after a long night," concert promoters said.

This year's lineup for the Thursday night summer series -- billed as "Southern California's largest free concert series" -- features the usual eclectic mix of world music, pop, rock, blues, funk and a classic rock band.

Once again, DJs from media partner KCRW will present each concert in the series, which is co-produced by RH&S Concerts, a partnership between Spaceland Presents and Rum & Humble.


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