Tribute to Nina Simone
Loads of talent at this Segal Centre Power Jazz presentation
By Byron Toben
Certain popular singers live on past their earthly demises in the form of tributes by others. Off hand, Sinatra and Presley seem to be the most frequent.
Recently, at least in Quebec, there has been a flurry of tributes to two women – Edith Piaf (d. 1963) and Nina Simone (d. 2003). In mid April, I reviewed Claire Garand doing Piaf and Nadia Theobal doing Simone, both at Le Balcon, both impressive.
In late April, I reviewed the wonderful musical The Angel and the Sparrow, at the Segal, wherein Louise Pitre renders as fine a Piaf as you’ll ever see (now extended to May 13).
Malika Tirolean, hailing from Guadeloupe, became a lead singer for Cirque de Soleil and also performed at the Montreal Jazz Festival in 2016.
Last Sunday, at the Segal Studios monthly Power Jazz series, Malika Tirolean – and Friends – performed another spirited Nina Simone tribute. Ms. Tirolean, hailing from Guadeloupe, became a lead singer for Cirque de Soleil and also performed at the Montreal Jazz Festival in 2016. I do not have a video of her as Simone, but here is one from her at that Jazz fest:
There are a ton of Simone herself on the Internet, most much too long for this review but here is one of the few short ones:
At the Segal, Ms Tirolean, elegantly costumed in a shimmering gold silken gown writhed standing up and occasionally while playing the piano (Ms. Simone, like Judy Collins, was originally a classic piano prodigy.)
‘So, rest in peace, Eunice Kathleen Waymon, (Nina Simone’s birth name), your vibe lives on with such talented artists.’
What talented accompanists supported this show!
On sax, Erik Hove who has played with many local and other stars, added a flute as well to the wind sounds.
On guitar, Christopher Cargnello showed his versatility as did David Ryshpan on keyboard, Martin Heslop on bass and Jean-David Thibeault-Desbiens on the most definitely required drums.
Special guest Emrical, topped by a cool fedora, added a rap commentary to two selections.
So, rest in peace, Eunice Kathleen Waymon, (Nina Simone’s birth name), your vibe lives on with such talented artists.
The Segal Centre’s Power Music Series of one nighters resumes in the Fall.
514 739-7944 or segalcentre.org
Images: courtesy of Malika Tirolean
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Byron Toben is the immediate past-president of the Montreal Press Club.
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