Easton native Alexis Babini opens Alive@Five

It took a lot of courage for Alexis Babini to get up in front of the crowd at Open Mic Night at Bridgeport’s Acoustic Cafe 10 years ago.

“I was so shy,” said the Easton native, who was 17 at the time. “There were older folks with guitars.  I was trying to get in front of them and say, ‘I can do it, too.'”

Now, 27, Babini has overcome much of his adolescent stage fright. That’s a good thing, given that the singer/songwriter is slated to perform in front of his biggest crowd yet — at Alive@Five on Thursday, July 11. Babini is set to open for Ryan Cabrera.

Babini, who recently capped off a nationwide tour with Aaron Carter, said he has seen photos of Alive@Five and “the sea of people that come out to the show is just incredible.”

“I’m really excited and now the weather is starting to clear up, it’s looking really good,” Babini said in a phone interview Thursday.

Babini first discovered the guitar as a student at Redding’s Joel Barlow High School — an epiphanic experience for the athletically-challenge teen.

“I was a really shy kid, I was pretty bad at all sports, so when I discovered the guitar, I just wanted to do it forever,” Babini recalled.

After high school, Babini went onto study at Berklee College of Music in Boston, honing his performing chops in the city’s coffeehouse scene. He now plays throughout New York City, where he presently resides.

This year, Babini recorded and released his debut album, “The Pioneer Spirit.” Produced primarily at Sound Design House in New York City, the 10-track pop/rock album is “a marriage of the organic and the synthetic” with acoustic guitar, banjo and harmonica layered over electronic drum loops.

The theme of “The Pioneer Spirit,” meanwhile, refers to Babini’s penchant for adventure and exploration.

Babini’s latest adventure takes him to a place that isn’t far from home. But seeing all those hundreds — perhaps thousands — of faces staring back up at him, Alive@Five could end up being his wildest ride yet.

Check out the video for Babini’s single, “Shut Up and Kiss Me,” and a live televised performance with Aaron Carter, below:

Scott Gargan