Sunday, 13 July 2008

Adele at Montreux Jazz Festival

At the end of one “Friday Night with Jonathan Ross” show not so long ago, he introduced the music to end the show from one, Adele. As she sang shyly in front of camera, her eyes evading its intruding search, I thought to myself, she'll go far and I want to see this girl perform live, she'll be great. A soaring voice and choice of genre just filled an empty space, left vacant by RnB singers of past years...
Last night I saw Adele play Montreux Jazz Festival when she opened the evening's musical offering in the Miles Davis Hall and would be followed by Mark Ronson and Jill Scott, who she credited with making her want to sing in the first place.

She nervously played with her audience and they were hooked. She said she was nervous and had had two beers earlier in the day, and they made her a little...'y'know, whwooo..he-he.' (tipsy?) They lapped it up and cheered her on.

Her confidence growing by the minute, she admitted that festivals daunted her. Then, realising that some of the international crowd there where from England she asked how many there were in the audience and a huge shout went around the hall and one guy shouted “Holland!”
She seemed taken aback and said, “we're in Switzerland so we must be Swiss tonight...” then she asked if there were any Germans, a cry went up to my right, she asked for the French, and a crowd immediately in front of me shouted loudly. Adele seemed overwhelmed. “Italy?” she called. Again more cheering, and then she thought and said, “Australia,” and some cheered... Wow!

“New Zealand?” A solitary hand went up and Adele laughingly dismissed it as a joke. She didn't seem to realise that so many from around the world either worked over here or had heard of her so that during their travels through Europe they might stop off to see her perform in concert.
She was magical. Her set opened with her own songs usually with a short preface that hed the audience loving the girl. Her story of First Love to a Spanish Columbian had audible sighs sounding upwards, we knew even if we were not her age, the emotions she felt. She even added a couple of covers by Dylan and Etta James, but only after apologising for doing covers, “because people will think you haven't written much...”

But this young singer with passion and a voice to fill the halls sang her heart out, played her guitars, one a four string acoustic bass that had the most wonderful of sounds and left our hearts fulfilled.

England has a new jazz singer, a new RnB singer... a youngster who pulls at her worn jumper on stage and complains of the holes in it and who for the moment, has that wonderfully engaging naivety and shyness thats make one at once proud and protective.

A great performance. The sole reason I bought the tickets for the show. And as tomorrow is Bastille day here in France, just across the water from Montreux, I'll have to wait til Tuesday to rush out and buy 19... her debut album. It'll be bought quickly enough by those there, that haven't already got it.

Her ranking in the world of modern music was ably shown when Mark Ronson during his show, admonished the audience for not roaring the very moment her mentioned Adele's name, and again when before he introduced her onto the stage to sing with him, her the fabulous hit “Cold Shoulder.”

I only bought the tickets for Adele, and am I glad I did ?.
ten out of ten....

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