On Sunday 19th April the Club hosted the legendary jazz vocalist Malcolm McNeill with a top-class backing group comprising Terry Crayford on keyboard, Paul Dyne on bass and Roger Sellers on drums, who presented an excellent programme of jazz and swing standards to a capacity audience with ease and panache. Malcolm has a relaxed and good humoured stage presence and he had an easy rapport with the audience. He is a very experienced and professional vocalist and his performance was most enjoyable. Terry and Paul and Roger played brilliantly with excellent empathy and drive and plenty of opportunity for exciting solo breaks.
The band opened with a warm-up ‘On Green Dolphin Street’, then Malcolm joined them with ‘The Way You Look Tonight’ followed by ‘Where or When’, ‘Ain’t Misbehavin’, ‘One Note Samba’, ‘Got You Under My Skin’, ‘Embraceable You‘ segued into ‘They Can’t Take That Away from Me’, then ‘Georgia’, ‘Lotus Blossom’, and finished the first half with a humorous ‘You and I and George’.
The second half kicked off with ‘’Bye Bye Blackbird’, then ‘Autumn Leaves’, ‘What’s the Hurry’, ‘Fascinating Rhythm’, ‘Everything Happen to Me’, ‘Early in the Morning’, ‘Honeysuckle Rose’, ‘Skylark’, ‘Walkin’ My Baby Back Home’, and an encore ‘Love is Here to Stay’.
Support entertainment was provided by solo pianist Louis Thompson-Munn who played and sang a selection of standards. His solo performance provided excellent ambience and was most appropriate in setting the scene for the main event to follow. I hope we can get him back again.
The Club has invested in an excellent sound system which worked well to project the performance to every corner of the room. Thanks to Kelvin Roy for procuring and controlling the system.
Unfortunately, this was the last time we could enjoy the hospitality of the Chicago Sports Café, as, following the April gig they have now closed down. The Club enjoyed its five years at the Chicago since its first gig there on 21st March 2010. The management and staff at the Chicago were very supportive of the Wellington Jazz Club, and we very much enjoyed their hospitality and support. We wish them all well.
Our next gig will be on Sunday 17th May at the D4 Restaurant, 143 Featherston Street (corner of Featherston and Brandon Sts), when we will host the Greg Crayford Sextet.
The evening will be led off at 4pm with our own Wellington Jazz Club Band led by Graham Kelly playing some easy listening jazz standards.
A big welcome to new member Connie Palmer. The Jazz Club is an excellent venue for entertaining friends and celebrating special events and listening to great jazz played by top-class musicians.