Friday, February 17, 2006

Kim Weston at the Jazz Cafe

Looking every inch the Motown star that she is - encased in a long black chiffon gown and immaculately coiffured - Kim Weston stormed onto the stage at the Jazz Cafe last night with a set that took us all back to the great soul era of the 60s. Her voice may be a little ragged at times - not surprising for a 66 year old (a fantastically well preserved one it has to be said) - but what she lacks in vocal purity she more than makes up for in excitement, professionalism and old fashioned glamour. She got the northern soul crowd dancing with Motown hits such as Take me in your arms and Helpless, showed a bluesier side with a delicious version of Please send me someone to love, and demonstrated her gospel roots too. Kim is also an excellent pianist but had to play standing up as she was worried that her tight fitting dress would split if she sat down to play. Best known for It takes two, her duet with Marvin Gaye, which she sang with a young man who came up on stage to sing Marvin's part with the aid of a songsheet (I didn't catch his name), Kim showed fans new and old that there is much more to her than just that. Altogether, it was a brilliant evening from a true legend, but there was a sting in the tail. As an encore she sang Dancing in the Street which, legend has it, she was offered and turned down, providing Martha and the Vandellas with a mega hit. Not so. Kim said that the song was written for her but TAKEN away from her. I asked her afterwards who had made that decision and she told me that it was her ex husband and Motown producer Mickey Stevenson. As for the reason, that will have to wait for her book, she said.


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