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Ian Shaw & Claire Martin

Ian Shaw & Claire Martin

We Love Ella Tribute
Featuring Jamelia, Lea DeLaria, Claire Martin, David McAlmont, Juliet Roberts, Ian Shaw, Terri Walker, Melody Gardot & Lizz Wright
@ Southbank Centre / Royal Festival Hall
16 November 2007

Click an image to enlarge.

Lea DeLaria - biography

Lea DeLaria, who already enjoyed a career as a Broadway singer and stand-up comedian, made her recording Warner Bros. debut in 2000 with the album “Play It Cool”. Her second album, “Double Standards”, received rave reviews in the UK and US press.

DeLaria’s UK jazz live dates have included the London Jazz Festival (2001 and 2007), Brighton’s Komedia, as well as several sold-out residencies at Pizza Express, and Pizza On The Park. She has also appeared at the New York City JVC, the Montreux Jazz Festival, and as the featured vocalist of The 50th Anniversary of The Newport Jazz Festival Tour.

Delaria is the first openly gay comic to appear on national television in the United States ( Arsenio Hall, 1993) from this point forward she has toured the world with her one-of-a-kind blend of cool jazz and in your face comedy.The United States Congress officially criticised Delaria in 1993, but this has not stopped her winning accolades including Muff Diva - Best Of The Fest (Edinburgh 1993) and Best Live Performance (Backstage Award 1999). Her work for television has also recieved acclaim, including the 1994 Regional Emmy for her performaces on Chanel 4 UK Television. Delaria was also awarded the 1999 Glama award for role in

Delaria continues to tour, performing at major festivals and clubs worldwide. She continues to impress critics and woo fans with her voice, she also continues to cross boundaries with her no take prisoner comedy approach.

Claire Martin biography

Growing up in a house full of music in Wimbledon, South London, Martin learned all of Judy Garland’s songs by the time she was 12. But it was hearing Ella Fitzgerald’s legendary “Song Books” that changed her life inspiring her to go to Stage School and then to study singing in London and New York. A further seminal moment came at 18 when she saw the great improvising singer Betty Carter at Ronnie Scott’s jazz club. It confirmed what she already felt - she had to be a jazz singer.

At 21, Martin formed her first quartet (featuring guitar-great Jim Mullen). Linn Records signed her in 1991, the start of a creative relationship that is still going strong today. Martin’s 1992 debut “The Waiting Game” scored rave reviews and was chosen as a Times Album of the Year. Martin achieved one of her ambitions later that year, opening for Tony Bennett at the Glasgow International Jazz Festival.
By the mid-nineties Martin had received the Rising Star and Best Vocalist awards at the British Jazz Awards while receiving rave reviews on her American debut with four sell-out shows in Washington DC. Another ambition was fulfilled with the recording of a live album at Ronnie Scott’s in 1995.

Martin has continued to gather awards, winning the Best Vocalist category for the fourth time at the 2002 British Jazz Awards and Best Vocalist at the BBC Jazz Awards in 2003.

Martin and her band regularly tour the Far East, Europe and Australia and was the first jazz group to perform in Vietnam. She also performs regularly with Girl Talk (alongside Mari Wilson and Barb Jungr). She can also be found performing with the Halle Orchestra and the Laurence Cottle Big Band. Martin also finds time to work as a broadcaster, working as co-presenter of Jazz Line-Up on BBC Radio 3 interviewing the likes of Michael Brecker, Andre Previn, and the occasional terrified young singer.

Juliet Roberts biography

Roberts was weaned on music from as far back as she can remember. Both of her grandfathers were drummers while her father, a Grenadian immigrant, was the guitarist in a calypso band called the Nightingales. Their rehearsal space was at the family home so her childhood was marked by easy access to guitar, piano and trumpet. Juliet found that her true instrument was the most natural one – the voice- and started to develop as a singer in her teens.

It was in the mid-80s that Roberts came to the attention of many through her work with a new generation of young jazz warriors such as Courtney Pine and her contribution to Working Week. She was also to be heard on a variety of sessions for genre-defying artists such as Yargo and then in the 90s she recorded a string of highly successful garage singles.

As comfortable as she was in the dance music arena, she never forsook her love of jazz and got a band together with the veteran bassist/DUNE records head honcho Gary Crosby for a series of gigs at the Jazz Cafe in London. This informal induction to the DUNE family subsequently led to a collaboration with saxophonist Denys Baptiste on his Be Where You Are and Alternating Currents albums. Then came an appearance on Jazz Jamaica All Stars’ Massive. A solo Juliet Roberts album was a logical progression.

Ian Shaw biography

Named Best Jazz Vocalist at the BBC Jazz Awards in 2007 and 2004, Ian Shaw has already amassed a number of highly acclaimed albums and is a popular performer both in the UK and the US.

Shaw’s career in performance began unusually for a jazz musician on the Alternative Cabaret Circuit, alongside such performers as Julian Clary, Rory Bremner and Jo Brand. Shaw was spotted by Dave Illic, jazz critic for “City Limits” and was described as “the voice of the decade”. In the next few years Shaw moved from the singer-pianist format to working with his new band to an eventual move into jazz. Shaw has toured extensively in the UK, Europe and the States, his appearances on TV included guesting with Jools Holland, Top of the Pops, The Jack Dee Show, Christmas Night with the Stars (BBC), C4’s The Happening, TVAM, BBC Breakfast Show, BBC 2’s A Night of Love, BBC 2’s Jazz at the 606 and, more recently, numerous appearances on the Performance and Artsworld channels.

His collaborators over the years have included: Guy Barker, Mari Wilson, Kenny Wheeler, John Taylor, Iain Ballamy, Mornington Lockett, Barb Jungr, Cleo Laine, John Dankworth, Cedar Walton, Joe Lovano, Joe Beck, Papa Vasquez, Lew Soloff, Geoffrey Williams and Ray Brown.

In 2002 Shaw performed in “Jerry Springer, the Opera”, by Richard Thomas and Stewart Lee. Thomas created the part of the warm-up man/devil for Shaw. Shaw is a regular on BBC Radio 2, 3 and 4 as well as contributing to “Behind the Mask with Alison Moyet”, a Something Else Production for Jazz FM.

As well as presenting Big Band Special for Radio 2, Shaw co-hosted The 2004 BBC Jazz Awards with Claire Martin, during which he picked up the Best Vocalist award.

In the summer of 2005, Shaw appeared in the new Adrian Shergold (“Dirty Filthy Love”, “Christmas Lights”) directed film, “Pierrepoint”, playing Percy, alongside Tim Spall and Juliet Stevenson. The film features a song, written by Shaw.

Terri Walker biography

London born Terri Walker was raised on a diet of soul and jazz. Her mother listened to artists such as Aretha Franklin, Chaka Khan Sarah Vaughn and Ella Fitzgerald.

After spending a brief period in Germany from the age of 4, Walker returned to England to commence a boarding school education. It was during her boarding school years that she received vocal coaching, specifically in opera.

Walker’s initial training and developing talents attracted many admirers, collaborators and production gurus from the growing British garage scene such as TNT and 187 Lockdown. Her more recent work has also seen commercial contributions from the likes of So Solid’s Asher D. Such experimentation would not sway Walker from earlier ‘rock solid input’ of old school soul and jazz.

Walker’s acclaimed debut album “Untitled” was released March 2003. In 2004 Walker received 4 Mobo award nominations. 2005 saw the release of more commercial offerings in the shape of her album “Love”.
Terri Walker contributes lyrically to much of her work, and like many conscious musicians, she takes pride in the whole process. Walker has gone from strength to strength since signing to London based Dekor Records in 2005. She is definitely her own woman.

Lizz Wright biography

Lizz Wright hails from Hahira, South Georgia. Both her parents were ministers. Her father (a pastor) eventually formed his own church. Apart from his regular duties, he also contributed to the church musically by serving as pianist and musical director. He would encourage Lizz to absorb as much as the church could offer. As you may imagine, her childhood was definitely not ‘rule free’: no sports, no television, no pants, no designer pantyhose and no short hair!

Despite such a strict upbringing, Wright somehow managed to maintain an open mind. In high school she sang with the choir and won many competitions. She also attended Georgia State in Atlanta to study voice at professional level. Wright gained further experience performing at jazz nightclub Churchill Grounds. In 2000 Wright joined the much talked about In The Spirit jazz group. Two years later she signed with the Verve record label.


Recommended
Listening

 

Ian Shaw - Drawn to All Things: Songs of Joni Mitchell
Claire Martin - He never mantioned love David McAlmont - Set One - You Go to My Head Lizz Wright - Salt Terri Walker - I Am
Melody Gardot - Worrisome Heart Lea DeLaria - Play it Cool Jamelia - Thank You Juliet Roberts - Beneath the surface

 

Further
Recommended
Viewing

Click Melody Gardot's image to see her @ the PizzaExpress Jazz Club, 2015,
or Lea DeLaria's image to see her @ the PizzaExpress Jazz Club, 2010.
Click Ian Shaw's imageto see him with Liane Carroll in 2009,
or Lizz Wright's image to see her at the Queen Elizabeth Hall in 2005...

Melody Gardot @ the PizzaExpress Jazz Club,  2015 Lea DeLaria @ the PizzaExpress Jazz Club London Jazz Festival, 2010 Ian Shaw & Liane Carroll @ the Pizza Express Jazz Club... Lizz Wright at the Royal Festival Hall 2005...

Go back to the London Jazz Festival 2007 home page.

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