“I’ve always been someone who gets goosebumps and shivers easily when things affect me, and I can remember vocal harmonies affecting me in this physical way from very early on. From there, it has always been part of my life, and I am comforted to think that whatever happens, it will stay there for me”
Hearing something you have written be brought to life by a group of exceptional performers is about the best experience you can have. It’s that joy that leads you to forget all the difficulties, which then enables you to start the process over again!
“I’ve been an activist in my music for a long time and I’ve been writing about police brutality for a long time, but oddly enough, I have never went near Strange Fruit,” says Vivian Sessoms.
Denson and James sign five of the album’s twelve songs, all works of exemplary craftmanship that deserve a place in the Australian Jazz canon (if there is such a thing). My personal favourites are the upbeat ‘Wild December Wind’ and the introspective ‘Maybe Tomorrow’ (I’m a sucker for 3/4 tunes); both perfect vehicles for Ingrid James to showcase her ability to convey real, almost tangible, emotions. You can feel her voice embracing and caressing you.
“I like to think of Pickpocket’s repertoire being groove based music with a strong emphasis on melodic development, interesting harmonic and rhythmic interaction and just enough improvisation to keep things fresh and interesting for both the musicians and the audience.”
“Kate Pass’ compositions and musical palette are far from mere exotica – in fact, the conversational mix of Western and Middle-Eastern music could not be more timely, with the current world schisms and tensions between the two cultures. To hear these voices side-by-side, talking and twining together is an almost political call for hope – one where neither side sees the other as ‘the other’.”
On ‘Any Last Requests’, Mark Lockett’s trio span well-loved standards, as well as hardcore jazz tunes – all with the variety, dexterity and telepathy that only a group forged in the NYC fire can. Each of the three brings everything necessary for three to become one, in aspiration and in execution.
I just keep doing things I love and playing with musicians I love and my voice shapes itself; if you are an artist, it is part of who you are, I think you are always aware of it.
It was sheer joy watching her and the entire ensemble throughout the night clearly having so much fun on stage.
“The show serves for a moment of escapism, where we get to dress up and play a person that would otherwise no longer exist. The interesting twist though, which makes me realise how far we’ve come since the 1940s, is that an all-female band would never have been dreamed of in that era.”