Sam Cooke learned to sing in church as a member of the Soul Stirrers. The goal of each performance was to get Sister Flute. Sister Flute was the woman who gave herself, all of herself, singing, shouting and gyrating to the music. It was the measure of their performance, and it was competitive. I am not going to let you passively enjoy this. I am coming to get you.
This is instructive to any performer especially early in their career when most opportunities to play are in front of people that have no idea who you are, and are listening to you while doing something else. You must make them watch, make them give a damn. The obvious answer is to be really good. The better answer is to be passionate. Passion is contagious. They may not know your name or be familiar with the song you are singing, but they can damn sure see and feel your passion.
Passion is internal. It exists whether you are performing in front of three people or three thousand. It is yours to bring or not.