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LV 's – Friday, September 14, 2007
Annette Lowman

Annette Lowman – vocals
Tony Pacini – piano
Dan Schulte – bass

I first heard vocalist Annette Lowman at the Mt Hood Jazz Festival in '05 and was wowed by her virtuosity.  Seeing her again recently at The Old Church, I was reminded of her incredible voice and warm presence.  I was happy to find out she was going to perform at LV 's and I'd have another opportunity to hear her in an intimate setting.

Annette was performing with musicians she'd never played with before, Tony Pacini and Dan Schulte.  You never would have known it though, they had such good rapport.  That's how it is with professional jazz musicians.  “That's the joy of jazz," remarked Annette.  "The beautiful thing about jazz is that it's improvised music.”  She opened with ‘S Wonderful, saying, “I always open with this - it's my good luck piece.”  Her voice was remarkable, sliding like a trombone- soft as a whisper, to a crescendo.

I wondered why she wasn't on the big stage and it turns out she was, having lived in Paris for twelve years and Norway for three.  She has performed in countless intimate clubs, and at festivals in Europe, opening for the likes of Ramsey Lewis, and recording with Archie Shepp. Annette said one of her favorite memories of living and performing in Paris was singing Lee Gains' Squeeze Me with the Claude Bolling Big Band.  Tonight, singing this tune, she gave me chills, stretching notes and jumping registers.

Annette mentioned having recorded But Beautiful with Stanley Turrentine, and began the tune with just piano accompaniment and ended with a vocal purr.  Really beautiful.  On Jobim's Wave she chose to end with just bass and percussive voice.  Tony and Dan provided impeccable accompaniment.  Annette dedicated God Bless the Child to Billy Holiday and felt the lyrics. Annette said Betty Carter was one of her favorite singers.  Betty recorded Jazz Ain't Nothin' but Soul (in '58 on I Can't Help It). Annette is very engaging and got us to sing along!

Before the break Annette introduced Tony and Dan, singing all the while, even singing Tony's website address.  She told (sang) her story of how she came to Portland, with Dan improvising behind her.

They got off to a rousing start on the second set with Strike up the Band.  Next was Caravan.  Both Tony and Dan contributed creative solos, and Annette ended with operatic sounds.  Just Annette and Dan started Honeysuckle Rose, then Tony joined in and they gave it a playful treatment.  Next she shifted gears, from These Precious Days, to Louie Jordan's Saturday Night Fish Fry, to All Blues.  Annette shared a memory of taking the train to Denmark to record I Don't Know Why, but I'm Feeling so Sad.  She finished with Lover Man, My Funny Valentine, Street of Dreams and Worksong.  It was an emotional journey and Annette left us feeling uplifted.

LV 's has evolved into a comfortable venue, and people come to listen. Music is Friday and Saturday, 7-10 PM . There's usually no cover charge. Free parking. LV 's is at 310 SW Lincoln St .


Copyright 2007, Jazz Society of Oregon