Even though Charlie Puth helms from the north oceanside corner of New Jersey, the pop star's iHeartRadio Album Release Party on Thursday night (May 10) in New York City felt like a hometown affair. Dressed in a graphic shirt and gingham pants, the 26-year-old chart-topper took the stage in Tribeca to perform an intimate set hours before the release of his sophomore effort, Voicenotes, putting his charm and quirks up for display.
After a premature entrance, which caught Z100's Maxwell and the audience in a wave of giggles, Puth shook aside those bangs and proved just why (if for only for 45 mins) he is just like you and me. He's from just south of the Lower New York Bay. He used to make mixtapes for girls in high school because of his self-described lack of game. Oh, and even after one of his busiest days of the year, all he wants to do is be in bed by 10 PM.
So on an evening like this, his personality paired particularly well as he let viewers in on his spunk as well his up and down relations with romance. After jumpstarting his set with "Attention," Puth was on a roll, navigating through other love-flicted Voicenotes cuts like "How Long," "Done For Me" (sans Kehlani) and the most important track on his 13-song set called "The Way I Am." "Maybe I'ma get a little anxious/ Maybe I'ma get a little shy/ 'Cause everybody's trying to be famous/ And I'm just trying to find a place to hide (oh)/ All I wanna do is just hold somebody," he crooned on the opening verse.
"My goal is to make this music as universal as possible, so just because I'm a famous dude, that doesn't mean that I'm [not] going through the same things. It's all relative on the scale," he told the crowd. "I'm literally a kid from Jersey."
Asked why he decided to push the LP from October 2017 to mid-May 2018, Puth citing his need for that one song. "There was one song in particular that I knew that I hadn't written yet," he said, adding that he was waiting out for a cut that really nailed his personality.
And by the end, while he also offered up closing songs like a cover of Maroon 5's "She Will Be Loved" and his Selena Gomez duet "We Don’t Talk Anymore," no other track would encompass his meteoric success like "See You Again," his breakthrough Wiz Khalifa collaboration. After mellowing out the crowd with his solo version and shouting out his band, Puth was off, leaving his piano behind and reminding concert-goers of his upcoming tour, which will see him take to Radio City Music Hall on July 16. If the 45-minute set was too short for your appetites, all you had to do was remember the hook to his Furious 7 smash and know that he will see you again.
Charlie Puth iHeartRadio Album Release Party Set List
- "How Long"
- "Done For Me"
- "The Way I Am"
- "See You Again"
- "She Will Be Loved” (Maroon 5 cover) - Encore
- "We Don't Talk Anymore" - Encore
Photo: Rachel Kaplan for iHeartRadio