Note: This review is from the 2018 Fringe

The Brooklyn Scotsman is a high-energy show from local musician Stevie Creed about his experiences as an 18-year-old from Edinburgh in Brooklyn trying to make it in the music industry. Creed tells his stories through a mixture of songs – all of which are well performed by both him and his backing singer and directly addressing the audience.

Creed’s tales of life Stateside range from the graphic (witnessing gang shootings and having an Uzi held to his head in a recording studio), to the more humorous (realising that the hotel he’s staying in is actually a brothel, then being offered a threesome with a porn star whilst working as a model). There is also a tragic tone to his performance; his account of his friend losing his baby son is not only harrowing but also a sad indictment of the state of the US healthcare system.

Whilst some of them vary in quality – with the story about the porn star and an additional anecdote about a pimp stealing Creed’s windows to pay for crack feeling a little contrived – the rest of Creed’s anecdotes are lively and vivid, illustrating the ups and downs of his life in the run-down areas of Brooklyn. Creed himself is an engaging storyteller and singer who doesn’t need a lot in terms of props and sound effects to bring his incredible story, encompassing a journey from naive immigrant to model to singer, to the stage.

The Brooklyn Scotsman shows that Creed is a talent to watch out for. This compelling autobiographical tale doesn’t pull any punches in describing the hardships he witnessed, nor undersells his experiences in the music and fashion worlds. Overall, this is an impressive show that provides a lot of entertainment with limited staging and resources – hopefully Creed and his backing musicians will be a staple of future Fringe festivals.