Tyler Hilton returned to Toronto on Sunday night leaving smitten twenty-something females in his wake. The California-based singer-songwriter elicited screams and squeals from the intimate, predominately female crowd at the Virgin Mobile Mod Club during his second of two Canadian stops on his summer tour. Armed with only an acoustic guitar and the audience for back-up vocals, Hilton serenaded the crowd for a shortened set of only 50 minutes due to his progressing head cold. By the end of the set Hilton’s voice was clearly strained, but the audience eagerly stepped in singing along word-for-word on each song, at time’s louder than the singer himself.
Cold or no cold, Tyler Hilton brought his usual charm to Toronto along with playful quips about the country he so obviously enjoys playing in. “Canada, the land of the weirdest money. It gets weirder every time I’m here!” he joked with the crowd. Truth is, Hilton better get used to it since as he so nicely put it, he will be, “marrying into the country soon,” since proposing to actress and Canuck Megan Park last year. Hilton hasn’t slowed down at all since his last Toronto show in September 2013 with the recent engagement, current role on the CBS sci-fi drama Extant starring Halle Berry, and successful Pledge Music campaign for his upcoming album, Indian Summer. Though it’s too early for album scoop, Hilton did play his song “California” which originally appeared on his 2013 live album and will be included on the new album as well.
Despite the shortened set, Hilton covered many songs from his latest studio release Forget the Storm. From the quiet and contemplative “Hey Jesus”, to honest love song “Prince of Nothing Charming”, and rounding out the night with raunchy crowd favourite “Loaded Gun”, the crowd ate every minute of it up. Fans of the long-running teen drama One Tree Hill (where Hilton played Chris Keller for a few seasons) were also not disappointed with the memorable covers of, “Missing You” and “When the Stars Go Blue” the latter which was performed alongside powerhouse vocalist Anna Rose who also opened the show. The set list also included a cover of Rihanna’s hit “Stay” and a bayou-inspired tune written by Hilton for the Lifetime Christmas movie he starred in (another feat since his last visit).
Tyler Hilton is an obvious musical gem and his Toronto fans will be eagerly awaiting new music and what is sure to be a triumphant return to the city soon.