Anita Wardell gave Jazznights a superb evening on Sunday 13th April 2014.

(Click on images for larger pictures)

Jazznights Anita Wardell 130414 (60)Anita’s singing was exciting and breath-taking. She is noted for her mesmerizing and captivating vocal improvisations and vocalese lyrics to instrumental solos. She is a musician who uses the voice as her instrument, displaying precision and agility, mixed with heartfelt emotion.

Anita received the prestigious BBC Jazz Award for Best of Jazz category in 2006 and Anita has been voted Best Vocalist in the 2013 British Jazz Awards. Baffling though they often are, this year’s BBC jazz awards got something right by handing this singer a Best of Jazz Award “for performing in a classic jazz style”. Though seldom heard on BBC airwaves, Anita Wardell is an exceptional talent. Whereas most singers bluff their way through wordless bars without
making any sense, Australia-reared, Guildford-born Anita is a true seat-singer. She thinks like a trumpeter or saxophonist, creating shapely lines to suit the song’s chord structure. Jazznights Anita Wardell 130414 (78 A)

A rich, expressive and agile voice allows Wardell to excel not only with the great ballad standards, which she sings with remarkable expressiveness, but also with bop classics. The guru of contemporary jazz singers, Mark Murphy, has extolled the quality of her bop singing, stating that it is ‘always so clear and accurate in its linearism’. Wardell also makes considerable use of scat singing in her programming and while many young singers launch into scat with only a faint notion of its strengths and limitations, she is an exceptionally gifted user of the form.

Anita was singing with the the Jazznights Trio who were:
Roger Odell Drums
Jazznights Roger Odell 130414 (38)Roger was one of the founder members and drummer with the jazz-funk group Shakatak and the forerunner band Tracks. Roger has toured internationally and recorded numerous    CDs, which he continues to do on a regular basis to this day. Apart from a great power   drummer he is also a prestigious arranger. Musically, his first love was always straight-ahead contemporary jazz, and in the past he has played with many of the great names on the UK scene including Don Rendell, Barbara Thompson, Dick Morrissey, Terry Smith, Joe Harriott and countless others. Roger is the author of three technical articles which appeared in the international magazine Modern Drummer.Jazznights Bernie Hodgkins 130414 (91)
Bernie Hodgkins – Double Bass Inspired by an uncle, who played and recorded with Django Reinhart and Stephane Grappelli in the legendary Quintet de Hot Club of France,Bernie grew up in a Jazz-oriented family.Their influence led him to  become a  respected bass player behind such people as Matt Munroe, Dickie Valentine and Dennis     Lotus, in the early stages of his career. Bernie is  particularly acknowledged as  being one of the few players to bring an authentic, driving jazz feel to both the double bass and the bass-guitar, and for his fluent and creative soloing. Tonight Bernie was playing his 5 string double bass with the extra C string.
Simon Brown – Piano
Simon’s piano playing has long been the sound accompaniment of first choice for nationally Jazznights Simon Brown 130414 (72)and internationally known jazz stars appearing at Jazznights as well as Norfolk’s two leading jazz venues, He is also an accomplished soloist in his own right, blending  vivacity and creative attack with often gentle lyricism.  His influences are Oscar Peterson,  Nat “King” Cole and Bill Evans. Since graduating from the University of East Anglia (UEA) in  1990,  Simon has worked as a performer, teacher of piano and music arranger and regularly appears at the most popular jazz clubs in East Anglia. His involvement in Blues, Jazz and Jazz-Funk combos have led to appearances at many jazz festivals and has shared the billing with the likes of Jools Holland, The James Taylor Quartet, Stacey Kent and Bobby Wellins apart from his regular performances as a primary member of the Jazznights Roger Odell Trio.
With additional vocals from:
Larraine Odell – vocals
Beginning her professional singing career with the group CMU with whom she recorded two Jazznights Larraine Odell 130414 (26)albums, Larraine performed at numerous venues throughout the UK and Europe, including the Purcell Room, RFH.  Boxford Fleece & Ronnie Scott’s.Larraine possesses a  unique smouldering tonal quality and a subtle jazz phrasing style that has elicited great  praise from two of her own vocal mentors, Mark Murphy and Sheila Jordan. “A sensitive   singer who exudes a fine-honed jazz sensibility with every phrase.” She has since appeared at Ronnie Scott’s Club as a member of the group Jimpster, at the Boxford Fleece with pianist Steve Lodder, most of the other jazz clubs in the region, and at the Aldeburgh, Layer Marney and Southwold Jazz Festivals.

Larraine Odell opened the first set which included:
Lullaby of the Leaves by composer Bernice Petkere and lyricist Joe Young, was featured in the 1932 Broadway revue Chamberlain Brown’s Scrap Book.
I Got Lost in His Arms is a song from the 1946 musical Annie Get Your Gun, written by Irving Berlin. It was performed by Ethel Merman in the original production of the musical.
Jazznights Larraine Odell   Trio 130414 (50)This Can’t Be Love (1938) Music composed by Richard Rodgers withg Lyrics by Lorenz Hart from the 1938 Broadway show The Boys from Syracuse.
Love is Gone with an original arrangement by Roger Odell.
Misty is a jazz standard written in 1954 by the pianist Erroll Garner.
Originally composed as an instrumental following the traditional 32-bar format and first recorded for Garner’s 1955 album Contrasts, the tune was later paired with lyrics by Johnny Burke and became the signature song of Johnny Mathis.

Anita Wardell the then joined the Jazznights Trio with a selection including:
You Turned the Tables on Me (1936) Music composed by  Louis Alterwirth lyrics from Jazznights Anita Wardell   Trio 130414 (105)Sidney D Mitchell. The song was introduced in the musical film Sing, Baby, Sing.
I’ll Remember April is a popular song and jazz standard with music written by Gene de Paul, and lyrics by Patricia Johnston and Don Raye. It made its debut in the 1942 Abbott and Costello comedy Ride ‘Em Cowboy, being sung by Dick Foran.
How Long Has This Been Going On? was originally written as a duet by George and Ira Gershwin for a Broadway show called Smarty in 1927.
Jerome Kern’s In Love In Vain from the movie “Centennial Summer”, directed by Otto Preminger. First performance by Margaret Whiting (1946).

Jazznights Geoff Harriman 010913 (66)Following the interval and the Jazznights raffle of 3 jazz cd’s and a bottle of wine we had  the traditional Jazznights sitting in spot  which is open to all musicians who have an  opportunity to play  with the band. Tonight we had the pleasure of Geoff Harriman playing his harmonica in a version of Sway

Anita Wardell then returned to sing:
My Shining Hour is a song composed by Harold Arlen, with lyrics by Johnny Mercer. It was written for the 1943 film The Sky’s the Limit.
Blue Pelude – A song written by Gordon Jenkins and Joe Bishop. First released by the Casa Loma Orchestra (1933)
A Night in Tunisia is a musical composition written by Dizzy Gillespie and Frank Paparelli in 1942 while Gillespie was playing with the Earl Hines Band. It has become a jazz standard.
Meaning of the Blues (1957) was written by Bobby Troup with lyrics by Leah Worth.
But Not For Me Music from George Gershwin and lyrics by Ira Gershwin. Ginger Rogers Jazznights Anita Wardell   Trio 130414 (107)introduced this during the first performance of Girl Crazy in 1930.
Lament (1954) from a transcription of the trombone solo written by J J Johnson.
“Lemon Drop” composed by George Wallington which was one one of his best known compositions and as been featured by Ella Fitzgerald on many of her albums.

A wonderful evening from this remarkable expressive jazz singer who all hoped would make another return to Jazznights in the future.

LOZ SPEYER (trumpet) will be featured at Jazznights on Sunday 27th April at The Cock Inn, Loz SpeyerClare.
The music of Loz Speyer combines a cutting-edge playful and subversive spirit with a melodic sense deeply rooted enough to draw people in – with or without their having jazz ears! He takes in a broad sweep of the vast music culture available but with a central focus on jazz. He currently leads two of his own bands, Time Zone and Inner Space Music.

Music 8.00 – 10.30pm   Admission £10.00
at The Cock Inn, Clare, Suffolk CO10 8PX
Reservations strongly advised on 01787 237653  or or email Your booking is held until 8pm on the night. Doors open 7.30pm.
For details of future gigs go to

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