Anita at the Ystad Sweden Jazz Festival

5th August 2016

…for me, however, chief candidate for the “jazz singer award” this year was Britain’s Anita Wardell. Bob Dorough had been scheduled to appear but unfortunately was indisposed so, at very short notice, Wardell was called in to help deliver an excellent tribute to Mr Hip in the company of trumpeter and vocalist Marten Lundgren, with bassist Helen Marstrand who also doubled on vocals…

For anyone who did not know Anita Wardell’s fine recordings Noted and Kinda Blue from 2006 and 2008 respectively, her assured intonation, pitch and rhythmic élan must have come as a revelation as she did full justice to the wit, wisdom and swing of Dorough and fellow spirits Dave Frishberg and Fran Landesman. As convincing in delivering a lyric as she was in scatting and vocalese, Wardell was simply superb. As such, she epitomised so much of what is compelling about the YJF.

Michael Tucker

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