The Spice of Life in Cambridge Circus boasts a cool and cosy hideout venue and every Wednesday night they bring us ‘Spicejazz’. Produced by Ronnie Scott’s Paul Pace this is an exquisite show of the very best within the broad cathedral of live jazz… from swing, bop and contemporary jazz to funk.
It was especially lovely to be greeted at the door by one of my favourite Soho characters Scottish magician Jackie Docherty. ‘Vando Jam’ – an instrumental and vocal jam which takes place on the first Wednesday of each month is hosted by saxophonist Matt Telfer who gave us a warm and welcoming introduction to the Dan Forshaw Quartet.
Swift jazz drums and I am ‘truly in heaven’ lyrically speaking with a stunning rendition of Irving Berlin’s ‘Cheek to Cheek. Deep flowing saxophone and a throbbing upright bass delicately plucked along the neck lays like a curvaceous siren over elegant and delicate piano playing. ‘Summertime’ was the perfect song on this sizzling Soho night and these musical magicians certainly add super spice to The Spice of Life! Each musician effortlessly holds each other. It’s lovely when instruments take you into a smoky dancing swirl, velvet piano tones that make you tingle. I loved watching the concentration and confidence that each of these men exude
With a beautiful drum explosion, we hear Dan’s own song ‘Cave Hill Stomp’. Influenced by marches in Belfast and taking it a step further by turning it around into a New Orleans sound. Well it worked and I felt like I was marching through the French Quarter on a hot Mardi Gras evening. The Dan Forshaw quartet are serious Jazz musicians who add a swiftly refreshing element of fun and showmanship. Producing succulent sparks of sexy snare, deep, deep bass, elegant piano, stunning saxophone and delicious vocals from Dan, we were all truly enticed and spoon-fed big heaps of delectable, wonderful Jazz and a wonderful summer evening in Soho.
Words Celine Hispiche
Photo’s Jeff Moh