The Jeanette Lindstrom Quintet

Dates 10 August 2007 @ 20.00 Venue Vancouver East Cultural Centre

Reviewer Susan Peake

From the moment the concert begins, you know you are going to like her. The first thing that Jeanette Lindstrom does when she walks out on the stage with her band is to sing itspraises. It is clear that she has the utmost respect for her fellow musicians, and several times throughout the first and second half of the concert she reminds the audience of how fortunate she is to work with these accomplished artists.

In the first half, the quintet treated us to several tracks from their CD “In the Middle of this Riddle” released in 2005. What seemed like a bit of a mediocre start to the evening’s entertainment soon became a rich combination of musical treats covering a spectrum of jazz styles that incorporated hints of musical theatre, soulful funk, and even a touch of pop.

Jeanette completed the first set with “The World,” and her scatting was by far the most accomplished I've ever heard – a myriad of sounds that defied the voice box. The audience was amazed.

After a short break, the quintet continued with tracts from “Walk”, their CD released in 2003. While most of the songs in this programme were written and composed by Jeanette, the second half included Henry Mancini’s “Whistling Away the Dark” from her CD of the same name, as well as the Burt Bacharach’s hit from the 60s, “Trains and Boats and Planes.” The band’s rich, unique rendition of these classics provided further evidence of their expertise as brilliant jazz musicians.

An added treat to the evening was the presence of Vancouver’s own Chris Gestrin on piano. Chris’s enormous talent is in high demand (he has worked with the likes of Randy Bachman, Nickelback, and Jim Byrnes, to name only a few), and he proved how versatile he is by accompanying Jeanette flawlessly throughout the evening.

While all the members of the band are undeniably gifted, Staffan Swenson on trumpet stood out with his uncanny ability to play what sounded like two notes simultaneously when performing a couple of his solos.

Jeanette Lindstrom’s voice covers a wide spectrum – from strong to satiny to musty to crystal clear. And to complement her award-winning abilities as a prominent jazz singer, she has an easy-going, down to earth, positive presence on stage. Friday’s concert was not only musically enjoyable but also uplifting. Bravo!

© 2007 Susan Peake