Kathryn Williams and Anthony Kerr at Loves Cafe

Anna Southwell runs Loves and has worked so hard to turn it into a well respected and much loved music venue as well as one of our favourite local cafes to hang out in. She seems to have developed a knack of booking artists who fit seamlessly into the ambiance of this warm, cosy and friendly place, and on this night Katherine Williams and Anthony Kerr proved themselves the perfect booking for this intimate venue.

Kathryn Williams is a Mercury nominated and critically acclaimed folk artist who has teamed up with revered jazz musician and vibraphone player Anthony Kerr to create an album of complete re-imaginings of classic jazz standards, including brand new single ‘Autumn Leaves’. Kathryn cites Leonard Cohen, Joni Mitchell, Bob Dylan, Nick Cave and Carole King amongst her musical influences, and her beautiful voice sits easily and comfortably amongst these greats. Kathryn describes the experience of going to a gig and hearing her musical collaboration with Kerr to be like ‘sitting in a warm bath with friends’. I would add to that its like being in that bath whilst in the middle of a smoky jazz club but without all the troublesome tobacco fumes. This evening feels warm and intimate, and the mellifluous tone of Kathryn’s voice set perfectly to the luscious and rich sound of that vibraphone played so expertly by Anthony somehow does have the aural sensation of warm water enveloping you!

Plenty of times in the gig, I had the odd feeling that the rest of the audience were not there anymore and Kathryn was singing to me alone, such was the power of her voice to draw you in. I also felt a little like she was peering into my head, poking about in my memory banks of old loves lost along the way and stirring up long forgotten emotions. I felt a little discombobulated by my exposed emotions, but soon settled. I was with friends (you ALWAYS feel like you are with friends in Loves, even if you don’t know anybody) and with my man. And when their beautiful version of ‘The Man I Love’ struck up, all was well with the world.

A highlight of the evening for me was her version of ‘Like Someone in Love’ originally by Bjork whose record label One Little Indian Kathryn is signed to. The evening was romantic, memorable and fuzzy. Well, maybe fuzzy because I had a little too much red wine, but that is another story…

For more info on Kathryn including tour dates, visit her website here

Review by Karen Blake

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