The songs on the cd "Rapture", a diverse collection of strong melodies with a contemporary jazz/folk sound, are based on ten poems from Duffy’s latest collection. The music is by Eliana Tomkins and the lyrics by Carol Ann Duffy.
The cd and book were launched in September 2005 at the Purcell Room. On stage were Eliana Tomkins, Peter King, Hugh Burns, Paul Robinson, Geoff Castle, Mario Castronari and Carol Ann Duffy. The performance consisted of poetry readings and the songs of “Rapture”. Previous and later appearances of a series of poetry and jazz shows with Duffy in 2004 and 2005 were in Lichfield and Stafford, at the Redbridge Festival, Glastonbury Festival, Bradford Festival, Ilkley Festival and the Manchester Poetry Festival.
The music was commissioned and adapted for an afternoon play on BBC Radio 4, which was broadcast in February 2006, with Eliana Tomkins, Fiona Shaw, Guy Barker, Karen Street, Dominic Ashworth and Nic France.
"Here’s a recording that casts its spell slowly. Adapting Carol Ann Duffy’s poetry for a jazz group may seem a thankless task, but this London-based singer achieves that rare feat — a true marriage of verse and music. It helps, of course, that Duffy’s love poems have a conversational flow, but Tomkins’ undemonstrative delivery adds an unmistakably sensual charge. A classy band, with Peter King and Guy Barker sharing solos, simmers nicely, but this is very much Tomkins’ show." Sunday Times, Feb 2006, Clive Davis
Available from www.jazzcds.co.uk
JAZZ7 label, ref ETRA1
CD personnel: voice ELIANA TOMKINS, trumpet GUY BARKER, guitars and mandolin NIKOLAJ BLOCH, piano and Hammond organ GEOFF CASTLE, bass MARIO CASTRONARI, cello BEN DAVIS, alto and soprano saxes PETER KING, drums and percussion RALPH SALMINS. Produced and mixed by HAYDN BENDALL at Whitfield Street Studios. Mastered by MAZEN MURAD at Whitfield Street Studios.
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