Winona Oak Joins Forces with Oh Wonder in Sacramento’s Ace of Spades

With just a couple of short weeks until the debut album release of Sweden-born, LA-based musician, Winona Oak, we attended her performance in Sacramento with British alt-pop darlings, Oh Wonder, at Sacramento’s Ace of Spades. Oak will be wrapping up her tour dates in the United States and jumping straight into dates throughout Europe as a special guest with Alec Benjamin.

A true artist, through-and-through, Winona Oak shared her love of poetry in the introduction of her set. Its vulnerability in the love of her home and usage of casual voice emanated through the venue as each verse rang true. Instrumentals poured into the soundscape as the performance officially began, and she broke into the first verse of “Break My Broken Heart.”

Each member of her band wore glitter on their eyes gently played as Winona’s vocals resonated through the crowd. Each lyric she sang offered an emotional take to the messages behind her work, offering a more personal, evocative experience to the songs in a way that refreshed the listening experience all the more.

Intentional moments were placed throughout her set, and one in particular that hit home was the message she shared before performing her newest single, “Jojo.” Here is what she had to say in full upon the release of the song that carried a similar weight.

Jojo is actually my nickname, I wrote ‘Jojo’ as a song to myself. Sometimes I feel helpless, frustrated and completely overwhelmed inside the frames of society. Specifically, I don’t know how to navigate inside this parallel universe of the internet and all that comes with it. It’s a world that’s getting more and more shallow and gives us endless access to everything. Polished images of “perfect” people living their ‘perfect’ lives online. I will never look like them, but the thing is that they don’t even look like themselves. 

On the internet we can be whoever we want to be. We can pick apart and choose the best parts of our personality, showcase our best moments, our most flattering images and even manipulate them to look less human. It’s a toxic part of social media that pushes people into doing things that ruin them. How do we know what’s real? How do we find real love and honest connections when you judge someone based on their internet persona? If money controls everything how can people without it control a change? (They can’t) And who am I in the middle of all of this? Just one out of billions of tiny little spots in the universe.

I know what you’re thinking, but despite its heavy subjects, I feel like writing ‘Jojo’ actually reminded me about what’s really important to me. There’s so much beauty and light surrounding me, real human connections, breathtaking nature and unconditional love. And in the end I’m made of the same particles as everyone else around me and maybe they feel just as lost as I do sometimes. I don’t know but maybe one day we’ll figure it out together.

~ Winona Oak

Each track she performed tied into what’s to come in her debut album, Island of the Sun, and while personalized, fans were able to be some of the first to listen to the unreleased tracks in a unique experience, that became all the more intimate, stripped back, and raw with each word. Many new her final song in her set, “He Don’t Love Me.” And the crowd listened intently, dancing to the beat, singing along to every word.

Winona Oak will be concluding her US tour and continuing in Europe throughout the summer. Her debut album, Island of the Sun, will be available on all streaming platforms on June 10th, but is available for pre-save HERE.

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