Jazz Aroma presents Lula Bop
We met with Louise to discover more about her style of singing and who her style heroes are.
Louise is Abingdon based and sings solo in the distinctive American Songbook style and as a duo with her brother in a band named 'Nostalgia' who have played all over the county, most recently at Abingdon's Nag's Head.
Louise's passion is for the vintage style of jazz and enjoys the classics once sang by female greats such as Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday, Carmen McRae, Nina Simone and Peggy Lee.
When jazz was booming in America, these were the names coming through the industry with delicious vocals and sensational new music. Today they are still home favourites with tracks still played in shops and radio such as Dream a Little Dream of Me, My Funny Valentine and Peggy Lee's 'Fever'.
It's hard not to love the classics with their sultry tones and nostalgia, so many films were made in this era benefiting from the new generation of jazz and it would be very hard to talk about American Song Book without mentioning Frank Sinatra!
The man was a legend and a key influencer in this genre creating incredible music greats such as Fly me to the Moon, New York, New York, The Girl from Ipanema, Something Stupid, The Way you look Tonight...too many to list!
There are so many names from this era and all worthy of a mention, this era influences our singer taking to Jazz Aroma this Sunday with a whole collection of classic American Song Book greats, we hope you come and enjoy listening to them performed live by Lula Bop, details can be found on the 'What's On Page'.
If you are interested in finding out more from Louise or would like to book her or her duo band Nostalgia for a private party please hop over to her website here.
funk jazz fusion meets welsh recording studio
We caught up with Jamie Howell, lead guitarist and composer in jazz funk band, Evidence Bass, where we learnt a little more about this local band and what drives their musical passion.
Jamie Howell, the brains and moving parts behind the band was born on the Isle of Wight, the youngest of two boys who largely took his musical influence from his older brother. By the time Jamie was 11 he started to play the drums and at the age of 13 he played the guitar, drawn mostly to the sounds of Brian May, Angus Young and Jimmy Page.
After gigging around the island, Jamie was introduced to Vernon Reid's 'Living Colour' who deconstructs traditional guitar riffs and blows them out of the water, leading Jamie on to the path of a very different genre from rock!
Knowing from a young age Jamie wanted to follow the path of a musician, he went on to study music tutored by Bobby Wellins and a year later Jazz at CLCM with tutors including Mike Walker and Adrian Ingram.
Once Jamie graduated and lived in Budapest for some time, he came back to the UK and formed a band in 2013 after experimenting with a combination of jazz, funk and blues from which began his new musical journey launching 'Evidence Bass'.
Evidence Bass have been writing and recording original material and maintaining a monthly residency at the Global Cafe in Reading ever since.
The band have grown from strength to strength in recent years with the 'Box Tree Sessions' of five original tunes were recorded in February 2014 in a cottage in the Welsh borders and three video tracks were filmed in September 2015.
Take a look, like and share 'Tentoy' here
Evidence Bass have performed with Linley Weir at The Pheasantry and Colour House Theatre and have performed twice at the Newport Jazz Weekend on the Isle of Wight, supporting Art Themen at Reading's Jazz cafe and a run of gigs featuring guest singers including Kelly Dixon, Ruth Hammond and Rik Martin.
Check out their 'Some Other Sunday' via Soundcloud here
If you are interested in finding more from Evidence Bass or Lead Guitarist Jamie Howell head over to their websites, they can be booked for private parties and will happily travel.
Jazz AROMA PRESENTS...Fleur stevenson
This week Jazz Aroma caught up with Fleur Stevenson, as talented a jazz singer as she is beautiful.
There's no underestimating Fleur's incredible talent and presence in the jazz world, Fleur has had the fortune to work with some very influential names in the musical world reinforcing her talent and love of singing.
Fleur was first introduced to the world of music classically, receiving musical training at Wells Cathedral School in Somerset to refine her skills in classical singing and trumpet.
Fleur's first experience of jazz singing was when asked to fill in for a soloist at a rehearsal, Fleur stepped in and immediately fell in love! Enjoying the freedom provided by the style. Fleur formed her own jazz band and began to make her presence felt joining the live music circuit in Oxfordshire and London.
Fleur further enhanced her musical skills by completing an Associate Trinity College Diploma from Trinity College London and began receiving personal tutoring from the talented British jazz vocalist, Claire Martin OBE, X-Factor voice coach Anita Wardell, Verona Chard, Paris Jazz Club resident Laura Littardi and one of Ronnie Scott's resident artists, Renato D'Aiello.
Fleur has a jam-packed summer coming up performing a fantastic range of events from dinner jazz gigs in Reading and her personal favourite evenings at Chelsea 606 Club Sunday 3rd June with her talented trio. For a full list of places Fleur will be performing please follow this link and plan ahead!
Jazz Aroma wanted to get to know a little more about Fleur and what makes her tick, we asked her 5 questions to learn more from this great artist.
If you could have dinner with anyone famous who would that be and what would they eat?
George Clooney obviously! And who cares what we eat or talk about!
... there are so many, I couldn't possibly choose. Herbie Hancock would have some stories to tell, and a lot of wisdom to share, or Quincy Jones perhaps... If I could bring someone back from the dead, Dudley Moore would be my dinner date.
Where is the very best place or country you have performed?
London! It's a great city, with a lively jazz scene. I love playing at the 606 Club, and Ronnies, but I also like the smaller more local venues, like a lovely yurt (www.haddonacre.co.uk/rhythms-at-the-yurt) that I play in a couple of times a year. It's so intimate, and the audience sit all around you; it's a wonderful vibe. Cafe Aroma should be just as lovely, I'm looking forward to it.
What would you like people to get from your singing?
I'm telling a story with every song. Each song means something to me, but it might not necessary mean the same to the listener, that's the beauty of this art. I tell the story and the audience interpret it. Every word has to be meant, I think Ella Fitzgerald once said '' I sing like I feel'', I think there's a lot to be said for that, and I hope it comes across in my music. I want my audience to go away satisfied and feeling like they've been part of a musical journey.
What does the next 12 months look like to you? Are you planning anything big for your musical career?
Someone once told me an awful joke: ''How does a jazz musician get three million pounds? .. He starts off with four!''... I've got some lovely gigs coming up and teaching lots; I'm always grateful to be doing a job I love and fortunate to have work coming in.
I'm recording this summer with wonderful pianist Pete Billington, so that will be a nice project, stripped down versions and quirky arrangements of some standards as well as a few more obscure tunes which we both really love. I've got some other nice collaborations in the pipeline that should be fun. I should have a few dates with Remi Harris, gypsy guitarist later this year, he's great.
It's an ever evolving art and my voice changes over the years and my life experience grows, so I'll keep doing what I love while I can and keep the jazz cog turning.
If you would like to get in touch with Fleur please head over to her website here or follow along with Fleur's Facebook page here.
Fleur and her Trio will be performing live at Jazz Aroma Sunday 17th June from 8pm. Reserve your ticket via this link to receive a table, table service and two complimentary drinks on the house! Grab them while you can, they won't hang around long.
the Man behind the sax...
This week Jazz Aroma catch up with Ottone Caretta to find out a little more from the man behind the sax...
Otto is a remarkably talented musician. By day this softly spoken, sedate gentle giant is one of Oxfordshire's scientific engineers, mathematical genius and computer whizz...but by night when he picks up his saxophone his alter-ego takes over and leads the audience on a journey through infamous depths of his musical abilities.
Otto learnt to play the saxophone as a teenager from his home town just north of Venice, Italy. He continued to learn alongside his training to be an engineer writing and performing to help pay his way through his education and now as an escapist side hobby.
The jazz band 'Ottone Caretta' have performed across the UK, in some exclusive venues, for Royals and A-list celebrities. Recently Otto has been performing with a 7 piece band called 'Funk Bake' which is just as popular, with the group working hard to release new music and perform more together this year, hoping to appear at several local Oxfordshire jazz and blue's festivals with their new music - subscribe to his Youtube channel to keep posted on dates!
Otto, a lover of all things jazz and blues plays saxophone in the hugely successful 8 piece blues band 'Bolt from the Blues', creating lively blues musical sets to sing and dance along to and have now performed at over 1000 weddings; they draw their inspiration from The Temptations, Otis Reading, James Brown and Bo Diddly, leaving guests enthralled and dancing the night away.
For something a little different where Otto plays sax with vocals from the gorgeous Rochelle Balach, 'The Zards' manage to create smooth happy upbeat tunes, with fun titles like 'Cockroach Grind' and 'The Traveller' and characterise their style of music as 'red hot and fully charged jazz'. Take a look at one of their Youtube videos to hear for yourself.
Jazz Aroma are lucky to have Otto perform live for us Sunday 3rd June (date may change slightly).
If you would like to book Otto or one of his many bands for your event, please head over to his website to find out more.
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