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Album Reviews

Bruce Lindsay –  AllAboutJazz.com 10/11/2012

A big thank you to Bruce Lindsay at AllAboutJazz.com
for his intelligently written review of At Last the CD

The Logo for Jazz website AllAboutJazz.com

“When Cairncross sings “Where Or When,” “Our Love Is Here To Stay”- which opens with her delightful unaccompanied alto voice and features one of Newton’s rare but perfectly-judged solos – or “The Nearness Of You” she makes every word count. Her voice, technically excellent and emotionally engaging, gives each lyric a very personal perspective, as if these are her stories, not just her interpretation of others’ tales. It’s the mark of a great jazz vocalist…….

Imagination and creativity can still produce new interpretations that can go straight to the emotional core of the lyric and straight to the audience’s collective heart. Which is exactly what happens when Cairncross and Newton get together on At Last

Read the whole review…..


Musician Autumn Edition 2012

Review of At Last in the Musician Magazine

Here’s a nice review in the Autumn edition of The Musician Magazine which goes out to all Musicians Union members:

Class vocals and piano from a singer of note

A pro singer for over 20 years, Cairncross’s career has seen her work home and abroad. Trained at the Guildhall, her initial work was in opera, however within two years she joined top vocal group The Swingle Singers and toured with them for 10 years. Now respected for her live performances with the likes of Steve Reich and the Monteverdi Choir, she has found time to release this album in the company of award-winning pianist David Newton. Their pairing makes a formidable team. Delivering a range of classics, their interpretations illustrate the timeless quality of The Nearness Of You, I’m Old Fashioned and Remind Me.

A marvellous recording.

Barry Clare – Just Jazz Magazine, May Edition

Thanks to Roger Eatough for bringing this review to my attention!

Just Jazz Magazine Cover May 2012 edition

“When I think of female vocalist/piano duets, I am immediately drawn to the albums made by Ella Fitzgerald and Paul Smith (‘The Intimate Ella’) and Ellis Larkin Larkins (‘Pure Ella’). For me, these were classics of the very highest order. If your style of Ella vocals are of the Mack The Knife type, these albums may not have been your cup of tea. For me, they rank, alongside the Buddy Bregman albums (‘Sings Cole Porter’ and ‘Sings Rogers and Hart’), as her very best work.

That I mention these Ella classics is a clue to what I am about to write about this wonderful new album from Heather Cairncross and David Newton. I must confess I am completely bowled over. I warn you you now that I might even run out of superlatives in trying to convey my complete and utter delight at this album……..

Heather Cairncross was a complete unknown quantity to me before I listened to this CD. I know I should get out more! Of course, David Newton did already rank in my own list of the very best Mainstream pianists. However, as an accompanist, he just exels. I have written before how the art of the accompaniment demands more than the usual skill of ensemble playing or, at least a different skill. The knack is to give as much support to the vocalist without coming between the vocalist and the song. This collaboration is an object lesson in achieving that balance.

David Newton’s fertile mind produces an easy, continuous flow of ideas and musical figures, adding so much to the vocal. And what about those vocals! Heather Cairncross has a superb, crystal-clear approach to the lyric. Every word is given the right emphasis, every phrase it’s due respect. Her diction is as close to perfection as I have ever heard.

Add to all this a choice of songs, which are some of the very best standards ever written, and the recipe just can’t fail. These are classics by Harry Warren, Hoagy Carmichael, Victor Young, Jerome Kern, Vernon Duke, Rodgers and Hart, and the Gershwins, plus two songs with lyrics by Alan and Marylin Bergman – what a selection! Another beautiful (but somewhat neglected) song is the last track, Some Other Time, from Berstein’s On The Town.

I am not overstating it to suggest this recording is absolutely exceptional. No ifs or buts, it is as good as any vocal album I have ever heard for a very long time. Just superb!”

Russell Davies, BBC Radio 2  – 5/02/2012

Russel Davies from BBC Radio 2“We find it hard to keep up with albums from new girl singers and look forward to introducing to the show such talents as the 27 year old Canadian jazz trumpeter & singer Bria Skonberg whose new CD “Fresh” has just arrived. Then our own Heather Cairncross has a fine new CD in company with just pianist Dave Newton (how refreshing!) called ‘At Last’. A beautiful and tranquil outing with 14 classics like ‘Remind Me’ and ‘Where Or When’. Some things to look forward to!

Walter Love-  Jazz Club – Radio Ulster 15/04/2012

“Third in this trio of Jazz Ladies is Heather Cairncross. I suppose the simplest form of delivering a song is with the unaccompanied voice but here is the beautiful simplicity of voice and piano. Heather, in the accompanying notes, gives a delightful explanation of how and why the album was made with herself and David Newton, whom she has known and recorded with previously. Just the two of them and the result is a remarkable example of empathy and understanding; and with Andy Cleyndert part of the production team the result is as near as perfect as you’re likely to get. Interesting to see how this recording fares when awards for 2012 come along. This is The Nearness Of You.”

22/3/12 Peter Bevan-Northern Echo

“This first solo album by former Swingle Singer Heather Cairncross contains some of the loveliest singing I’ve heard. Beautifully in tune, clearly enunciated and nicely expressive, she also has the inestimable advantage of piano accompaniment by David Newton at his finest.“


Heather Cairncross Singer will be performing on Tuesday 10th August with David Newton in Winchfield Hampshire.For this concert she will be joined by David Newton (piano), one of the most versatile and gifted pianists on the jazz scene and 16 times winner of Best UK Jazz Pianist award. Dave played to great acclaim at the 2012 Winchfield Festival. For this concert Heather and Dave will be joined by Tom Farmer on the bass and Sebastiaan de Krom (who also played at the 2012 Winchfield Festival) on the drums. More details at www.winchfieldfestival.org/festival-lineup.html

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A Lesser spotted August Jazz gig!We are delighted to reveal the musicians who will play at this year’s Winchfield Festival. Eight nights from Saturday 7th August until Saturday 14th August. Sat 7 Aug: The Festival opens with the electrifying Tango Siempre, UK’s leading Tango Company, who will take us on a breath-taking journey into the heart of Tango Argentina. www.facebook.com/Tango.Siempre/Sun 8 Aug: Fenella Humphreys Violin and Cara Berridge, playing violin and cello, will thrill the audience with pieces from Bartok, Bach, and Ravel.Mon 9 Aug: The Galliard Ensemble, comprising flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon and French horn form one of Britain’s leading chamber groups, known for its virtuosic, entertaining and distinctive performance. Tues 10 Aug: 16-times Best UK Jazz Pianist David Newton and singer Heather Cairncross, with drums and bass will perform some mesmerizing jazz with great technical artistry. www.facebook.com/AltovoiceWed 11 Aug: Robert Plane, an eloquent and impassioned clarinetist, will join the Solem String Quartet to perform the wonderful Mozart Clarinet Quintet in A major as well as the Coleridge-Taylor Clarinet Quintet in F sharp minor. The Solem Quartet has established itself as one of the most innovative and adventurous quartets of its generation, presenting daring feats of virtuosity within thoughtfully curated programmes. www.facebook.com/robertplaneclarinet and www.facebook.com/solemquartet/Thurs 12 Aug: Welsh harpist @Catrin Finch and Senegalese kora player Seckou Keita, will bring an exciting repertoire of music which draws on the deep harp-based musical traditions of both countries.www.facebook.com/CatrinFinchSeckouKeita/Fri 13 Aug: 12 Voices and 4 Saxophones will come together in an exciting collaboration between Corvus Consort and the Ferio Saxophone Quartet. Their programme will include a variety of classical and baroque pieces which explore the close interaction between the timbres of voices and saxophones. www.facebook.com/corvusconsort and www.facebook.com/feriosax/Sat 14 Aug: Saturday Night’s Alright! Come and join the party to close this festival with ‘Ultimate Elton and The Rocket Band’ – a tribute to Sir Elton John by the three times winner of the National Tribute Awards. Some tribute artists look like their idol, some sound like their idol; Paul Bacon as Sir Elton John does both! Close your eyes and you won’t believe your ears!https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100028245982648&ref=sgm

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The Swingles & The Stay at Home Choir – You’re All I Need to Get By

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May 2021
Album Reviews - Heather Cairncross UK Jazz Singer