Ms Seale presents a selection of Ellington staples and delivers them with grace, style and a joy of singing these wonderful songs that it is infectious.
Natasha Seale (vocals); Mike Gorman (piano); Robert Rickenberg (bass); Clark Tracey (drums)
With a glowing resumé as an actor and leading lady in the West End it is a given that Natasha Seale is a trained and skilled vocalist, but can she do jazz, and does she swing? Well, on the evidence heard on this EP the answer is a definite and emphatic yes.
With a crack band for this live recording at Crazy Coqs, Ms Seale presents a selection of Ellington staples and delivers them with grace, style and a joy of singing these wonderful songs that it is infectious.
Her reading of “Mood Indigo” is delicately nuanced and with her beautifully clear voice each word and phrase is captured perfectly. “Sophisticated Lady” is delivered in a similar manner and the subtly in her phrasing is matched by the trio.
Letting her jazz chops shine through, Seale takes “I’m Just A Lucky So And So” at a delightfully relaxed and swinging tempo. Pianist Mike Gorman takes an economical and lyrical solo which does not go unnoticed by the vocalist.
Kicking things up a notch, the band swing hard on “I’m Checkin’ Out Goombye” and even at this tempo her phrasing and diction is flawless Solo honours once again go to the pianist. Drummer Clark Tracey flexes his muscles, much to Natasha’s obvious delight, with an impeccable solo and the number sizzles along in a most agreeable manner.
The trio give “Caravan” an intense workout in an absorbing performance that again swings mightily, and again Mike Gorman shows what a fantastic pianist he is, all driven by the bass and drums partnership of Robert Rickenberg and Tracey.
The EP closes with “Satin Doll”, one of Ellington’s tunes that is becoming in danger of being over recorded but Natasha’s vibrant rendition reminded me just how much I like this song, and her singing it.
This is a lively set from Natasha Seale and the trio, and it is a certainty that more material exists from the night’s music making.
It is hoped that Natasha will be encouraged to make more available in a full-length album as this splendid EP whets the appetite for more. Until then, “Ellington Seale’d” is available to buy at Natasha’s gigs or from her website.