Martini Music: A funky jazz comparison

My dream gig this week would be Sharon Jones with Hollie Smith. The big question: Who would headline?

If you’re reading this outside New Zealand you might not know Hollie Smith, but if you’re a fan of Jones and the Dap-Kings you will like the Kiwi singer too.

Smith’s voice has a deeper bass note and her music is not quite in the same danceable be-bop/funky groove as Sharon Jones, but the jazz-blues roots are there and so is the lyrical and musical weight.

They are modern divas of soul and both have new-ish albums out (as of Feb/March 2010).

Smith’s Humour and the misfortune of others is a hard-hitting mix of ballads and jazz-influenced rock-blues  that move the soul and lift the spirits, despite being written to express Smith’s emotional roller-coaster existence through 2008-2009. The lead track and first single is “Mamma”.

The stand-out track for me is “Let me go”, it has a soul choir that wouldn’t be out of place in a Memphis tabernacle.

Jones and the Dap-Kings are based in Brooklyn, but they too have some bluesy roots and have got the funk-soul thing down to a fine art on I learned the hard way, their fourth studio album.

And they’d bring the house down live.

Jones is super cool, check out this interview from South by South West earlier this year.

There’s a 30 year age gap between Jones and Smith (alias Smith & Jones), but I’m sure they would get on and certainly they’d fill the stage and the auditorium if they were to gig together in New Zealand.

If you’re a promoter, get this double bill together and give Kiwi audiences a real musical treat.

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2 Responses to Martini Music: A funky jazz comparison

  1. Medusa says:

    How very funky indeed EM! Fantastic double if you can get it…love this Sharon Jones piece too, she just gets better every time. You guys in NZ are a bit spoiled with awesome female artists too, something in the water or maybe just people with much spirit.

    As they sometimes say, thank you for the music

  2. kutarere says:

    I don’t know whether you have heard (or heard of) Eileen (Ila) Scott, but if she is new to you I am sure you will be impressed. http://www.ilascott.com/
    This young lady has a great voice and has matured beautifully since I first heard her perform in a High School talent quest a wee while ago. Do check her out.

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