Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Blues in the Night

Where: Ordway
Who: Jamecia Bennett, Julius C. Collins III, Debbie Duncan, Regina Marie Williams (vocals); Raymond Berg (keyboards), Mark Lenander (guitar), Jay Young (bass), Joe Pulice (drums)

I'm previewing Blues in the Night for MinnPost this week and went to see it last night. Great classic songs (blues, torch songs, jazz), fantastic singers (any one of the four cast members could knock down the walls of Jericho), wonderful set and staging, sparse crowd. The show deserves better.

Debbie Duncan granted me an interview this morning, during which she said, "As you live and breathe and walk this Earth at some point in time, you will experience the blues." Yes, but when you experience them like this, you go away happy.

My MinnPost column is a preview, not a review, so I couldn't mention the songs that were high points for me: Debbie's "New Orleans Hop Scop Blues," Jamecia's "Taking a Chance on Love" and "Willow Weep for Me" (wrenching and emotional), "Kitchen Man," a song mined with double entendres which Debbie sang with considerable relish, Bessie Smith's "Dirty No-Gooder's Blues," which Debbie nailed, and Alberta Hunter's "Rough and Ready Man," magnificently sung by Regina Williams. Good stuff.

Photo of Debbie Duncan taken at the Artists' Quarter in March 2007.

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