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Ladies in Blue

Join the X this week for Kellylee Evans, a Canadian of Jamaican origin, whose tribute to late priestess of jazz and soul  Nina Simone succeeds in going beyond tribute to something fresh and utterly engaging, plus an excerpt from Regina writer Kathleen Wall's debut novel, Blue Duets.  

Kellylee Evans is a Juno and Gemini Award nominee who received accolades for her first two albums, Fight or Flight and The Good Girl, which seamlessly fuse jazz and her own unique style of "soul pop". The music in today's broadcast comes from Nina, her new release, is a beautiful tribute to one of jazz's greatest vocalists and pianists, Nina Simone.

The Canadian singer was approached by French label Plus Loin Music, who had discovered her through her 2nd place win at the Thelonious Monk Jazz Vocals Competition. After several years of discussion, they invited her to France in November of 2009, where she spent two days in the studio. "They said I could do whatever I wanted as long as it was standards" Evans recalls. "I had always wanted to do a Nina Simone tribute. She was one of my mom's favourites, and my husband's, and I love her too. So I chose her and they were really gung ho."

Evans' love and respect for the original recordings of the music shines through, but, even in taking on some of Simone's most iconic repertoire, today's concert on the album showcase Kelly's own versatility, creativity and innate musicality.

Hear the whole concert again, courtesy of CBC Radio 2's Concerts on Demand.

  Kellylee performs "Don't Let Me be Misunderstood" from the Nina Cd.



Kathleen Wall is an award-winning scholar and author of two books of poetry. Her poetry collection Time's Body won a Major Manuscript Award for poetry from the Saskatchewan Writers Guild. Blue Duets is her first novel.



Wiebe.jpgWe've got another arts spot today--this time with nature photographer Patricia Wiebe. You can find her photographs for sale on the Northern Image Photographers website.