Related Reviews
Jazzman
"Elle les aborde avec aisance sur une tessiture très large..."
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... so musically talented that hearing them verges on the sublime
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...The delivery was charming, the vocals outstanding
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LondonJazz
Manly's Nina Simone Songbook was a definite hit
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Singer's Singer - In Tune International
"glorious...utterly breathtaking"
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Newbury Today
...as good a set as we have heard
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HiFi.nl
"Een ware ontdekking."
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Vortex
"impressive throughout...Warmly recommended."
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In Tune International
"Gill has a warmly evocative vocal style..."
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Record Collector
4 Stars
"a smooth performance"
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Daily Mail
hearing that great voice again (very like Ella Fitzgerald), the years drop away and the lyrics trace patterns on my heart
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Atlanta Audio Society
"seamless vocal artistry"
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Audiophile Audition
4 Stars
"what a voice and delivery!"
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6moons.com
...sometimes a recording just transcends tastes and styles
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Sempre Audio (translation)
"And having reached the last page, leaves you wanting more . . . "
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Sempre Audio
"Und am Ende angelangt, will man mehr davon..."
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Home Theater Hi-Fi, Spirit of Change & Bay Area Reporter
5 Stars
"The voice...is adorable. You've got to hear this fabulous artist."
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Jazzwise
Songs "sung with such intelligence and self-possession".
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Yorkshire Post
Manly is superb, her rich voice bringing the best out of the lyrics...
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The Jazz Breakfast
5 Stars
"It's truly remarkable and truly inspiring to hear a "new" singer who is this good."
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Sunday Post
"...a treat for lovers of top-notch jazz..."
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Scotland on Sunday
3 Stars
...a very feminine, feather-light voice, terrific control and - judging by the selection here - great taste in repertoire and musicians
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Sunday Herald
...the spirit of Ella Fitzgerald is hovering close by
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The Herald
4 Stars
Guy Barker is the trumpet foil here, on a set of songs associated with Ella Fitzgerald. You'd have to be good to pull that concept off, and Gill Manly sure is.
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The Times
easily one of the best vocal efforts of the past 12 months
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Gill Manly - Live at the Vortex - May 2010


08 May 2010
Chris Parker

The release of Gill Manly's 'With a Song in My Heart' in 2009 marked her return to the recording studios after a gap of 13 years; this gig was her first at the Vortex since the mid-1990s.

There was, consequently, an almost palpable sense of anticipation in the air as she took the stage, accompanied by pianist Simon Wallace, and her first set, comprising nine songs ranging from Nina Simone staples such as 'Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood' and 'In the Dark', through jazz classics ('A Night in Tunisia') to standards and torch songs, was performed to a rapt hush punctuated only by applause and the odd burst of laughter provoked by her punchily acerbic stage announcements.

Manly trained as an actress at the London Drama School, and began her singing career in fringe musicals, so her interpretation of 'Love for Sale' brought out all the world-weary complexity and humanity in Porter's lyric, and her visit to 'September Song' was at once thrillingly dramatic, tender and touching.

She is also a skilful jazz singer â€" her voice flexible and versatile enough both to insert passages of imaginative but surefooted scatting into songs where appropriate and to move easily between the hushed romanticism of 'Wild is the Wind', the uncomplicated joyousness of 'Moondance' and the heart-on-sleeve sincerity of her singalong closer 'You've Got a Friend' â€" and a warm and witty stage presence, interrupting 'Black Coffee', for instance, with an amusing disquisition on what she refers to as 'doormat' songs.

In short, this was a wholly enjoyable performance from an assured and accomplished singer, and it richly deserved the standing ovation it received from a full house.


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