Jordana balances joviality, artistry in vibrant show at Rickshaw Stop

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Nick Quinlan/Senior Staff

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“You can’t turn down party beads!” Jordana exclaimed as she carefully arranged a set of sparkly red plastic pearls around her neck, a spontaneous gift from a fan at San Francisco’s Rickshaw Stop on the evening of June 16. The strand adorned the 21-year-old singer for the rest of the night, its gleam a stylish reminder of the friendly, playful rapport Jordana has perfected with her fans.

The New York City-based artist released her latest album Face The Wall in May 2022 following her sold-out tour with TV Girl and the release of their collaborative EP Summer’s Over. Between opening for indie rock group Wallows and alt-pop icon Remi Wolf, Jordana now made her way to San Francisco as part of her first headlining tour.

Throughout her performance at Rickshaw Stop, Jordana paired casually roguish charm with expert performance and production skills. Her witty banter and ongoing jokes lent the performance an easygoing feel that was equal parts comedy and concert, her humor acting as the foundation for her musical talent’s marrow.

Proof of this quirky humor was her good luck charm: a rubber Gumby figure that perched on the microphone facing the crowd, a silent spectator that Jordana treated as a fifth member of the band. At one point, she even picked him up and lovingly sang to him.

“I’m Jordana, and this is Gumby up here,” Jordana said. “He’s been the star of the show.”

Jordana opened the show with the first song on Face The Wall, the catchy, pop-laced “Pressure Point.” Strumming her mint-blue electric guitar and dancing exuberantly around the cramped stage, Jordana seemed entirely in her element. Her voice sounded deep and richly magnetic in the small space, her vibrant personality bleeding into all facets of her performance.

“This next one involves vulgar language. I apologize if any parents are here,” Jordana warned before her performance of “Fuck You,” employing an inflated, theatrical British accent. “My mom hates this song. It’s got a bad word in it, and I repeat the word in the chorus!” To emphasize its message, Jordana spent the song enthusiastically flipping off the audience, who eagerly returned the gesture.

Jordana filled the show with many fun-loving moments like this. In between taking selfies on a fan’s phone, pausing to judge a water bottle flipping contest and sharing her Poop Maps handle (@jordanashits), Jordana also managed to play terrific music — somehow, she walked a perfectly balanced line between performance and play.

As if being comedic and entertaining wasn’t enough, Jordana’s vocals served as a testament to the range of her talent, the mood shifting seamlessly with each song’s distinctive sound. During the softer “I Guess This Is Life,” she swapped out her electric blue guitar for a ukulele, the crushed red velvet curtains behind her turning green under the colored lights as she gently crooned over the instrument. Alternatively, “Catch My Drift” had audience members jumping and moshing to its erratic catchiness, much to Jordana’s delight. “Thank you for jumping, that’s so sweet!” the singer exclaimed.

The entire show was a curated, skillful collection of fun. Jordana’s performance of “Sweet To Dream” featured breathtaking vocals and a surreal atmospheric vibe, while she described “I Mean That” as “kinda a rocker.” For the encore, Jordana began with a lively cover of “Hard To Explain” by The Strokes, who she cites as her most significant musical inspiration. 

“If you know me, you know I’m a slut for The Strokes,” she said at one point in the show. Her passion for their music has evidently paid off: she did them ample justice in her cover, her angelic voice the perfect medium for their indie-punk-rock buoyancy. 

An ideal closing track and also a suggestion for how to get home after the concert, Jordana finished the night with “Jump the Turnstile,” a nostalgic product of her alliance with TV Girl. “All alone, so far away from home,” she sang wistfully, the catchy guitar riff reverberating around in fans’ heads as they slowly melted out the doors towards home after one of their most undoubtedly memorable nights of the summer.

Contact Vivian Stacy at [email protected].