'Dear Blossom' reviews
A Cabaret show and a successful CD
By the Janet Seidel Trio
The tribute show encapsulates the best tunes from the repertoire of the late Blossom Dearie and has has been performed by Australia’s “first lady of jazz singing” (Penguin Guide to Jazz on CD) in theatres, concert halls and clubs all over Australia and abroad. For those not familiar with Blossom suffice to mention she was something of a cult favourite from Paris to New York to London particularly. Even after her passing in 2008 she is championed by those in the know as a quirky and funny artist of the highest standard not just for her clever compositions and unique vocal artistry, but also for her exquisite jazz piano styling. Number 1 celebrity Blossom fan is Australia’s international pop icon Kylie Minogue, who shares co-incidently, the same birthday as Janet (albeit in a very different year!)
John Shand reviewed Janet’s CD ‘Dear Blossom’ in the Sydney Morning Herald 2004
This analogue recording almost radiates heat, it's so warm.
Janet Seidel sounds at home doing this stuff: there was always a girlishness to her voice and a cushion of air underneath it, anyway, and the prevailing wryness suits her. The Dave Frishberg songs like 'My Attorney Bernie' and 'Peel Me a Grape' are immortal, and guitarist Chuck Morgan, bassist David Seidel and drummer Billy Ross give everything the magic-carpet-ride treatment.
Adelaide Advertiser: review from Adelaide Cabaret Festival 2005
'Someone should send Janet Seidel flowers for her delicate and engaging tribute to a truly eccentric music talent, the ageless Blossom Dearie. She takes a representative sample from her catalogue and sings with a touch of the breathy finesse that characterises a Dearie song. Seidel is a very fine singer in a very cool way with a light touch on the keys.'
Reviewed by Alison Kerr - Glasgow Herald 2009
“Janet Seidel, who was accompanied by her regular guitarist Chuck Morgan and her bassist brother David Seidel, immediately won over the crowd at the Recital Room with her sunny disposition and exquisite, crystal clear vocals. The inﬂuences may be Blossom Dearie and Peggy Lee, but it was Julie London - albeit with a wider range and more power - whom Seidel's soft and gentle voice instantly brought to mind.
The theme of the evening was the late American singer-pianist Blossom Dearie, and Seidel lived up to her promise of performing Dearie's material - both her original songs and the standards she favoured - without imitating her. Only on her own tribute song Dear Blossom did she have a go at what she cleverly described as Dearie's "fairy voice"!
Seidel clearly shares an impish sense of humour with her idol: this was a gig with lots of laughs, thanks to such witty songs as I'm Hip, Peel Me a Grape and, especially, the hilarious ProMusica Antiqua. Other highlights included lovely versions of It Might As Well Be Spring (partly sung in French), a Mancini medley and Tea for Two.
Seidel is clearly a class act …. And if the audience's enthusiastic reaction is anything to go by, this ﬁrst visit to Glasgow certainly won't be her last.”
Review by Michael Darvall - London Pizza on the park 2009
Janet reveals just what a spirited yet gentle performer she is.
In her cabaret tribute and on her “Dear Blossom” CD she recreates Blossom’s style of delivery without slavishly making it an imitation. It is more an impression of the great and original singer. It is good to have a reminder of the jazz musician’s work and to have somebody else carrying on the tradition.
Seidel is joined on her UK tour by her brother David and Chuck Morgan, both excellent musicians who fit together sympathetically. Seidel demonstrates Blossom’s versatility in her choice of songs
‘I’m shadowing you’ is a song that Blossom wrote with Johnny Mercer which is a satirical slant on the work of J. Edgar Hoover and the CIA. Even in something quite serious Blossom enjoyed herself. Janet also sings Michel Legrand’s ‘Once upon a Summertime’, for which Mercer wrote the English lyrics. ‘My attorney Bernie’ is one that Janet, assuming the mantle of Blossom, does in such a sweet and direct way, that it becomes the epitome of charm.
William Wilson, MBE, Proprietor, Lyth Arts Centre, Scotland 2011
“Dear Janet, I can't tell you how much I enjoyed your appearance at Ronnie Scott’s last Sunday. From the very first moment, it took off and all three of you were in great form. I loved the repertoire you had chosen - all the best Blossom tunes - I think that now you've managed to draw a full house at Ronnie's, other doors will open. It must have felt great to have walked out on that stage and thought "Yep! Here I am at last". I felt so proud of you and remembered thinking all those years ago when you first came to Lyth - this singer is as good as it gets - this is what world-class means.”