9 February 2009

Hot day, cool women

They may not have felt that way on such a sweltering day, but the second of the series of Women in Jazz was pretty cool. Hannah, Sally and Marie appear often enough in these pages. Hannah was griping about getting used to her new and very different Velvet strings, but it was smooth and steady playing, and there were many very nice solos from her. Sally looked worried in my pics, but it must have been the heat rather than the performance, because she was always clearly expressed and never effusive in her accompaniment and soloing. There were no drums on the day, but the beat was strong from two very reliable rhythm players. Marie sang with a high and pure voice. Mostly I love her scat: it’s truly a forte. It was great to hear an old favourite from the first incarnation of Return to Forever, 500 miles high. Marie’s voice suited really well as a cover for the original by Flora Purim. (My impression is that Spain and Teentown have now taken on the role as the unison-melody feature pieces, but 500 miles high remains a great little tune with its driving latin and feature unison fill). In my own sweet way was impressive, and a few other ballads that I can’t name.

The women would have enjoyed the cool change in the evening, but it came too late for them on that day. It should be easier going for next week’s Women in Jazz. BTW, this was also the weekend of the great fires in Victoria. We were learning of tens, then over 100 deaths, with temperatures of 48C and wind speeds of 120kmh. Canberra suffered losses in our great fire around 6 years ago, so we sympathise. Best wishes from CJ. We feel for you.

The Women in Jazz series continues each Sunday afternoon, 2-4pm, at Pangaea Bar in Manuka. Free entry. This week Marie Le Brun (vocals) sang with Sally Greenaway (piano) and Hannah James (bass) in accompaniment.

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