Down the Dusty road

Still too early for listing gigs of the year. However, the clear revelation of the year in terms of hearing someone live for the first time and certainly in my list already for inclusion in gigs of the year is Amanda St John. Listening to 'Talk …

Published: 10 Dec 2019. Updated: 3 years.

Still too early for listing gigs of the year. However, the clear revelation of the year in terms of hearing someone live for the first time and certainly in my list already for inclusion in gigs of the year is Amanda St John. Listening to 'Talk It Out' I thought back to the London launch at the Green Note in Camden Town of Muscle Shoals from which it is drawn. It sends me there instantly. That night St John was completely at ease on stage. She has a warm presence. Her voice is nothing less than a soul experience and there are no meaningful borders between jazz and soul.

St John recorded the album at FAME in Alabama with some of “the Swampers” among the personnel at the studio where Aretha Franklin made history. The songs have a validity and authenticity to them borne out of a huge amount of turbulence in the singer’s life. It is only once in a blue moon that a singer as credible in this soul seeking style as St John comes along. She should be huge like Rumer and Duffy. Regardless as to whether this happens or not, the Dusty road is completely hers and her achievement whether live or in the studio speaks volumes already. Stephen Graham

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Piano 20 Living Greats

1 Herbie Hancock 2 Keith Jarrett 3 Chick Corea 4 Ahmad Jamal 5 Jason Moran 6 Toshiko Akiyoshi 7 Django Bates 8 Ramsey Lewis 9 Robert Glasper 10 Junior Mance 11 Marcin Wasilewski 12 Vijay Iyer 13 Joanne Brackeen 14 Danilo Pérez 15 …

Published: 10 Dec 2019. Updated: 3 years.

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1 Herbie Hancock

2 Keith Jarrett

3 Chick Corea

4 Ahmad Jamal

5 Jason Moran

6 Toshiko Akiyoshi

7 Django Bates

8 Ramsey Lewis

9 Robert Glasper

10 Junior Mance

11 Marcin Wasilewski

12 Vijay Iyer

13 Joanne Brackeen

14 Danilo Pérez

15 Renee Rosnes

16 Kenny Barron

17 Chucho Valdés

18 Brad Mehldau

19 Fred Hersch

20 Ethan Iverson