Laura Izibor – Je t’adore!

9 12 2009

Laura Izibor rocked the Camden Jazz Cafe last week, and while I am no pro music reviewer like my dear friend Hellafied over at The Gospel According To Gates, I can’t NOT talk about this amazing performance.

A Dublin, Ireland native, this 20 year old transported the crowd at the Camden Jazz Cafe  into a timeless space in which she sang Al Green better than Al himself and offhandedly mentioned the time when she met the Soul legend. Then she seamlessly wove almost the entire 1994 Mary J. Blige smash ‘Real Love’ into an interlude of one of her own songs, all the while scatting more fiercely than Bill Cosby himself, who would most definitely have had her on the Cosby Show if we were still back in the day.

At times she looked so young on stage, as 20 year olds do, but her stage presence and her piano-led show could have taken place in a Parisian cafe in the 20s or a 50s beatnik club, she could have been Ella or Billie up there…and it wasnt until I was cramming myself back into the Camden Town tube station that the magic of the show wore off enough to remind me we were in London on a cold winter’s night in 2009.

Her spirit on stage was magical, she danced and sang and joked with her band with such commeraderie that you know they are the dearest of friends both on and offstage.  The audience was also one of the highlights of the night. The Jazz Cafe cant hold more than a couple hundred at most, and of these, the mix of black, white, straight, gay, young and old was perfectly balanced even beyond a normal London gig. She appeals to such a wide audience and embodies that mixture of cultures, backgrounds and even age, as Laura is 20 going on classic.

I am relieved to have seen her before her US hit single Shine becomes just the first of many hit singles and her only choice is to fill larger and larger venues. The intimate setting , including her diva-esque entrance down the stairs onto the stage, certainly helped the entire crowd to fall hopelessly in love with this brilliant star, who also gently mentioned how her hero Jill Scott walked along in a film as her very own song played in the background. She works with some of the biggest talent out there and will no doubt soon sit among them all at the grandest of soul/jazz legends parties.

Enjoy….

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