Louise Dodds
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Louise Dodds

London, England, United Kingdom | SELF

London, England, United Kingdom | SELF
Band Jazz


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"Bye bye Dubai hello Capital"

TWO Edinburgh musicians will be performing in the Capital after returning from a stint playing at a seven-star hotel in Dubai.
Jazz singer Louise Dodds and pianist Tom Scott have been performing at the world famous Burj Al Arab hotel.

Fresh from their residency, the pair will be taking to the stage at The Jazz Bar, in Chambers Street on Sunday at 9pm.

Performing with them on the night will be Rick Bamford on drums and Owen McDonald on double bass.

The show will be Louise and Tom's first performance in Edinburgh since returning from Dubai. - Edinburgh Evening News

"That's All For Jazz Festival"

The Riverfront Jazz Festival wound up its 27 years of live performances in Greenwich with a farewell show at Up The Creek.

The festival has lost its council funding and bowed out with a series of shows in town centre venues before the sad finale.

"LOUISE DODDS, Dave Moses and Terrance Cowling excelled with stunning vocals, great bass-playing and high comedy," joked Jazz Festival committee member Terry Grant, "but not necessarily in that order."

Good news for jazz fans is that the trio will all be performing back in Greenwich with trumpeter Bill Crow at Mycenae House, Blackheath, on Monday June 27 at 8pm. Tickets are £5/£4 - Greenwich Visitor

"The Big Jam"

JAZZ is alive and well and thriving in Edinburgh. It was touch and go for a while, but thanks to the interest generated by the likes of Michael Bublé and Jamie Cullum, jazz audiences are getting younger.

At least three-quarters of the crowd at the Jazz Bar last night were well under 30, knew the tunes, knew to clap after solos and certainly knew how to whoop and yell passionately when they liked something.

Of course, Bublé and Cullum don't play the same kind of material as the Edinburgh jazzers, but it's close enough to get the fans in, and they arrived in droves. The red-lit room was relaxed and smokey, like any self-respecting jazz bar ought to be, and the buzz of chatter and clinking glasses grew, anticipating the first few notes from the piano.

Half an hour later, it was impossible to get a seat and even getting to stand close to the stage was a challenge. Not bad for a cold January night.

The format of the Monday night show, a kind of open mic for local and not-so local jazzers, is that the resident trio begin with a few numbers before inviting soloists and substitutes onstage for a few tunes each.

Because of the slightly longer pauses between numbers while the musicians shuffle around, there's no interval, so it's pretty much non-stop music the whole night long once it gets going.

No-one phones ahead to book a spot, so the trio have no idea what they'll be asked to play, but that's all part of the job of being a jazz musician: know every song in every key and know as many variations and versions as possible.

Jazz drummer and impresario Bill Kyle knows a tune or two, as does veteran pianist Paul Kirby and one of Edinburgh's best upright bass players, Ed Kelly. Together they provided the foundation for several jams with guests, some well known, and some first-timers.

English violinist Feliks Tabis fell into the latter camp and, while jazz violin might be unusual these days, it's not unknown. From Stephan Grappelli to Jean-Luc Ponty, the violin has featured historically in jazz and it was a joy to hear it played so well here.

Far and away the best female vocalist of the evening was Louise Dodds.

Together with the expansive chords of pianist Tom Scott, she sang Monk's Ask Me Now and the classic Caravan with simple, tight arrangements and a lot of flair. A regular in venues around the Capital, her voice had a gutsy yet gentle quality that briefly quietened the crowd.

The indisputable star of the show, however, was drummer Paul Mills. Accompanying Dodds for her songs and also onstage for much of the evening, he was an entertainment in himself. A consummate drummer, possibly the finest in Scotland today, he played like a hyperactive child with a hysterically expressive face and rubber limbs and not one single stroke out of place.

As if that wasn't enough, he also sang a fabulously soulful version of God Bless the Child without a trace of mawkishness. A solo show from Mills would earn five stars effortlessly. The Big Jam is basically a jazz variety show and, while occasionally there'll be someone you might not like, with music of this quality it's hard to resist going back every Monday.
- Edinburgh Evening News


Louise Dodds - 2006

Airs and Grace Notes - Due for Release in 2011



Hailing from Scotland, vocalist Louise Dodds has seen her work take her throughout the UK, Europe and around the Middle East. Since emerging on the jazz scene in 2005, Louise has performed throughout the UK and overseas at many prestigious venues and events, including Pizza on the Park, the Glasgow Jazz Festival and the 7 star Burj Al Arab Hotel, and her first eponymous album was featured on several BBC Radio shows (including a live interview broadcast from her headline gig at Pizza on the Park, Knightsbridge, London).

She boasts an impressive jazz repertoire of over 300 songs, including bebop and vocalese numbers as well as songs from the Great American Songbook and current jazz artists and her own compositions.

2011 brings her much-anticipated second album Airs and Grace Notes. This new recording showcases Louise’s skills as a vocalist and lyricist, as the album is a collection of previously released jazz instrumentals which she has penned lyrics to, including some famous solos.

The album features songs by some of the greatest jazz artists of all time including Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter and Horace Silver and has given Louise the chance to explore her love of vocalese. Since first discovering Lambert, Hendricks and Ross many years ago it has been one of her main loves in singing.

Now based in London, Louise has the honour of working with some of the best jazz musicians in town and the band will be performing the new album live in due course. Live dates including album launch will be available shortly on the website.

As a songwriter, she has been commissioned to write for film as well as penning music for her own performances, which are a blend of soul, jazz and pop.