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Bebop Spoken There

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Born This Day
Louis Armstrong and Steve Andrews.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Stacey Kent at the Gala Theatre Durham

Stacey Kent can both delight and annoy. Her voice, irritatingly coarse one minute, soft and tender the next. Rarely does she maintain the consistency she displays on record. Tonight was one of the better ones with only the opening “Hard Hearted Hannah” and the “My Fair Lady” number “Show Me” being particularly grating. Paradoxically, one of the more beautiful renditions was from the same show; “I’ve Grown Accustomed to Her Face.” Stacey also had her moments on a couple of chanson the titles of which I didn’t catch but were sung quite evocatively. Her latest disc, “Breakfast on the Morning Tram,” was well featured and, whilst confessing to the appeal of the title track, I cannot disagree with the two gentlemen sitting behind me, one of whom remarked that, a couple of years from now, the originals on the CD will probably be forgotten whereas the material she uses from the GASB will be played and sung forever. Jim Tomlinson (Mr Kent) is a nice tenor player in the Stan Getz mould and he plays some pretty stuff in between his wife’s warbling but a little more gut in the bucket wouldn’t go amiss. On piano, Graham Harvey made the most of his limited solo space, Steve Chamberlain (bass) seemed sound enough and Matt Skelton held more than a little in reserve during his drum solo. By and large it was an enjoyable evening although Stacey’s cringe-making gushiness towards hubby make the Dankworths seem, by comparision, like the Duckworths.

1 comment :

Anonymous said...

Yes, a very pleasant night!
With a few more up tempo numbers the performance would have been complete.
Stacey and her musicians have a good rapport with the audience and deserve their success.

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