Clairdee Live at Yoshi’s Tonight
The incomparable vocalist Clairdee
will be performing tonight at Yoshi’s
for two shows, 8 and 10pm. I first heard her in concert in 2002. She was sensational and I have been a fan ever since.
Yesterday, I had the pleasure of attending a Vocal/Piano Improvisation Workshop at The Jazzschool
taught by Clairdee and pianist Larry Vuckovich
. The first half of the two-hour class was devoted to demonstrating the relationship between accompaniment and vocal styling and phrasing. The second half was for question and students got a chance to sing while being accompanied by fellow students who had never seen their music charts (notes for their songs) before. It was very exciting, inspiring, and educational. It gave me an opportunity to sharpen my ear as a reviewer. No, I did not get a chance to sing but I promised Clairdee that I would next time. See you at Yoshi’s tonight!
And now a review of the show…
Clairdee – Vocals
Ken French – Piano
Charles McNeal – Saxophones
Ron Belcher – Bass
Deszon X. Clairborne – Drums
There is something very special about Clairdee. She is kind, warm, gorgeous, and very personable. She is amazingly gracious as greets old and new fans before and after her shows. She definitely makes everyone feel right at home.
Both of her Yoshi’s shows were recorded for KCSM-FM91
and may be used for her next album. Clairdee opened her set with a soulful and mellow rendition of “I Only Have Eyes For You.” She added a little funk to the swinging on “You Can’t Take That Away From Me.” The Nat King Cole
classic tune “L-O-V-E” began with a touch of Latin rhythm, then broke into a swing, and came back down to a gentle rhythm. She flowed effortlessly on every note. She soared on “Too Marvelous For Words” which featured Deszon on drums and Ron on upright bass. The Frank Sinatra
classic “All The Way” was infused with a soulful groove and featured Charles on a soprano sax solo. She also sang wonderful arrangements of “This Can’t Be Love” and “What A Difference A Day Makes.” She kicked it up a notch on Bobby Hebb’s
“Sunny” which featured Ken on the keys. Clairdee closed out the evening with an arrangement of “Alright Okay” that was reminiscent of Les McCann’s
“Trying Make It Real Compared To What?” Now if you have not seen her in concert yet, you are definitely missing a great show.
And now an extra special treat…
Photo by j-notes.com
Tuesday evening, I had the honor of attending a reception and a web broadcast of Clairdee and her band. It was hosted by her record label, Declare Music and held in the Meyer Sound Performance Hall of the Ex’pression College for Digital Arts in Emeryville. The hall held about 30 people so it was very intimate but we made it sound like large concert venue with our cheers and applause. Her hour long web broadcast featured much of the music from her concerts the night before. She also included “Summertime” and “Comes Love.” It was a great evening.
Special thanks to Clairdee for inviting me to be a part of this event.