Here’s a recent review of a lunchtime concert we did in Newbury at the excellent Corn Exchange.
A special thanks to all the very welcoming and professional staff at the venue including the Steinway piano tuner….and of course to Derek Ansell for the review.
Jazz – Southern Sinfonia Café Concert
Dave Newton/Chris Hill Duo with Heather Cairncross, at the Corn Exchange on Friday October 19
Singer Adds A Touch Of Spice
“A welcome return by Jazz pianist Dave Newton saw him reunited with bassist Chris Hill and joined by singer Heather Cairncross.
The singer chose some solid standard songs, many of them neglected of late, but all the more welcome in this context for their current rarity.
She began with I’m Old Fashioned, a song that crops up every now and then with discerning vocalists and this version found Heather stretching the notes appealingly as Dave Newton wrapped chords around her and Chris Hill provided a smooth bassline. His sound was warm and woody as he played without amplification, a sure way to bring out the best in the instrument.
Heather Cairnross followed on with I Only Have Eyes For You and The Nearness Of You, both melodic and attractive examples of quality popular songwriting. The first at ballad tempo allowed Dave Newton to etch delicate filigrees of sound alongside the vocal and his piano solo that followed on was springy and sprightly.
Where or When, another high quality tune, had Heather delivering the lyrics with crystal-clear diction, as Dave Newton accompanied and slipped in a quote from Surrey With The Fringe On Top. A well articulated bass solo came next and then the singer began to scat on the melody line. She told us that Dave Newton doesn’t approve of ‘ladies that scat’ in his band, but he gave her the thumbs up on this occasion and can have no complaints whatsoever about this performance. It fitted ideally the mood and ambience of the band and location, to spice up the reading.
The trio fitted 10 good selections in before Heather Cairncross sang the old torch song One For My Baby as an encore with the boys. Best known as a favourite of both Billie Holliday and Frank Sinatra, it was a fitting farewell at the end of a very musical recital where there were no histrionics, no big screech top notes to the gallery, just good music, well played and well sung by a tightly integrated trio.”
Newbury Weekly News 25/10/2012