I kind of think I like this version of Havana from Camilla Cabello with Jimmy Fallon and The Roots just a little better than the radio version. There are times when the music just gets in the way of the lyrics and becomes so much noise that it drowns it out. Sometimes just hearing the basic elements of music along with the lyrics is best simply because it’s easier to get into and doesn’t overwhelm the listener on any particular level. Music is very subjective and doesn’t sound the same to any two people all the time, so it’s all a matter of personal taste. Personally, I like the a capella versions at times just because. No reason, they just sound better to the ear.
While this wasn’t just Camila Cabello singing the words the simpler accompaniment made a much richer and more lasting effect. It could have been the enclosed space as well since the different acoustics could have made it sound more integrated and less like a bunch of individuals performing together. When the sound comes together it’s a much more harmonious feeling than if a group performs out in the open, where sound can dissipate and fragment as it travels outwards thanks to various ambient noises. This is part of why I don’t personally like going to huge concerts since the spaces used don’t often allow for the proper acoustics that might make the songs sound that much better. While I’m not a fan of packing a big number of people into an enclosed space the sound quality of such closeness is often far better because it can allow those sounds to overlap and create a much more cohesive unit that doesn’t allow for a lot of space between the music and they lyrics.
That could be why Jimmy Fallon decides to perform these bits in such tight spaces, because it does make the music sound that much better. Concerts are a lot of fun, they allow you to engage with other people and get out of the house to have a little fun, but the music quality is often horrible. A lot of people might disagree but to be quite honest an open air concert is hard to get into other than for the experience since it can be a lot of fun to go and see your favorite artist perform, but the chances are good that their voice is going to be drowned out a bit no matter how high up the speakers are turned. I’m not knocking concerts by any means, as I’ve been to a few in my lifetime and had a great time at each and every one. But the quality of the music does tend to get degraded just a bit.
This style though, singing with simple instruments and backup vocals, is special because it sounds so great and it’s not a common practice for many artists. So when it does happen it’s something fun to listen to just because of what it is.