Andrea Superstein live at Studio 64. Photo by Rod Wilson

Slick jazz and entertaining anecdotes at Superstein concert in Kimberley

Review of the Worlds Apart concert by Andrea Superstein, live at Studio 64

By Mike Redfern

Another cozy, comfortable evening of good music and good humour, so characteristic of Live at Studio 64 concerts, was enjoyed by Saturday night’s audience at Andrea Superstein’s ‘Worlds Apart’ concert on November 23. Superstein had something of that “girl next door” quality about her, a relaxed, informal style and almost constant smile that soon engaged her listeners as she took us on a tour of her latest ‘Worlds Apart’ album.

Recorded in Montreal, where Superstein grew up, the album’s title reflects the difference between the culture she experienced there and that of her adopted home in Vancouver. She gave us a taste of this with a song in French (De temps en temps) though most of the program, suitably enough for a Kimberley audience, was in English. Amidst a number of original compositions written and sung by Superstein was one by her backing keyboard player, Elizabeth Shepherd, an acclaimed jazz musician in her own right, in which she demonstrated her own vocal talents. Shepherd it was who produced the ‘Worlds Apart’ album.

Backing Superstein’s powerful vocals and playing melody as well as rhythmic accompaniment on upright bass was James Meger, whose impressive fingering was frequently showcased and applauded by an appreciative audience. Both he and drummer, Kyle Hutchins, were impeccable.

The concert included re-imagined popular song tracks in contrasting styles and restructured tempos, from “My Favourite Things” from ‘Sound of Music’ to Bob Dylan’s “Don’t Think Twice, It’s Alright”. My favourite was Andrea’s rendition of “I Want To Be Evil”. In several numbers she electronically transformed her vocal delivery to provide a gravelly contrast to her normal clean sound. She certainly validated music critic Tom Harrison’s description of her as “redefining jazz”.

The concert was preceded by Live @ Studio 64’s new ‘Music in the Gallery’ program featuring Kimberley guitarist Don Glasrud who proved once again what a fine instrumentalist he is. Patrons were able to view the exhibition of fabulous Christmas gift art work currently filling the gallery, all available for sale at remarkably reasonable prices, while enjoying the music and a glass of wine or a beer before settling down next door in Studio 64 for what proved to be an entertaining evening of modern jazz and amusing anecdotes.

This concert concluded the Live at Studio 64 fall series. The spring series will open on March 17 with the gypsy jazz of the Mark Atkinson Trio from Ladysmith, BC. This will be followed on April 17 by the UK’s Red Dirt Skinners and in May by the return to Studio 64 of A Little Voodoo from Calgary.

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