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Bebop Spoken There

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Friday, April 20, 2018

CD Review: Sheila Jordan with The Brian Kellock Trio and The Tori String Quartet - Live In London

Sheila Jordan (vocals); Brian Kellock (piano); Calum Gourlay (bass); Stu Ritchie (drums)
Guillem Calvo (1st violin); Helena Massip ( 2nd violin); David Frankel (viola); Hannah Marshall (cello)
(Review by Ann Alex)
Here I am having this CD signed by Sheila Jordan at GIJF 2018. Sheila signed it ‘Love & Jazz, Keep Singing’, which I intend to do, let Lance and Russell pretend (?) to wince as much as they like. The CD is similar in many ways to the GIJF performance (with different instrumentalists), but listening to a CD is a different experience, with no distractions such as stage lights and so on. It was recorded live in 2010 at the Pizza Express Jazz Club, Soho, and issued again as a limited edition for GIJF 2018. Sheila’s amusing chat is included in an edited form.
There is a charming opening of just bass and voice for Dat Dere, and the listener is able to concentrate on the humour of the child’s questions. Lyrics by Oscar Brown Jnr, who obviously understood children.  Sheila mentions that she’s ‘aged 81 and a half, birthday November 18. Perhaps we should all send a card this year!  Heart’s Desire is sung with feeling and there’s a tasty piano solo, as on other tracks. How Deep Is the Ocean is preceded by our singer’s comments on the gig ‘everything’s gonna be ok as long as I stay sober’, then come pizzicato strings, appropriate scat, and a jazzy solo from the cello. Who says you can’t play jazz with a string quartet?  Just to round things off, there’s a false ending to fool the audience, then the end of the first set is announced in song.  
The second set includes a Latin-rhythmed All Or Nothing At All; two songs combined, Dreamer and What’ll I Do; Charlie Parker’s Confirmation; then her own composition, Sheila’s Blues, telling her life story (born Detroit, brought up by grandparents, sang for Pennsylvania miners, loved bebop when she heard it in her teens), and she takes the opportunity to profusely thank all the instrumentalists. Then the CD is nicely rounded off with Lucky to Be Me; Some Other Time; and a moving rendering of Autumn In New York before she deftly touches her toes, as she did at the GIJF performance.

So I have a lovely souvenir of the festival gig. I have no idea whether there are many other copies available, and no website is quoted, so you must turn to Mr Google if you want to get this great recording.
Ann Alex

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