Curtains Up session one
Circus Tavern Purfleet
Session one September 22nd
Producer Paul Rogers
Reviewer Johnny Tait
The show compere Miki Travis presented a new and hopefully regular fixture in the national showcase calendar and opening the show was Essex based three piece male vocal act The Bass Tones. They were well presented with excellent choreography which matched their well-rehearsed popular vocal numbers, a really enjoyable act that would be suitable for any venue or occasion.
Next up came Mike Summers as Buster, who entered performing a selection of popular Ska numbers. Buster was not dressed in the traditional two-tone garb of the Ska performer. Instead this Buster was resplendent in a tartan kilt and white t-shirt, a la Mr Bloodvessel himself.
With a popular household name now back to being a regular face on national television there may be an opening for Tom Jones tribute acts. Paul Miles presented exactly that to us and finishing with a superb rendition of the old classic Till.
Does anyone remember dots? With four very skilled musicians seated by the stage waiting to back anyone that requires their services, it was refreshing to hear Gee Bello perform The Commodores classic Three Times a Lady with the support of live musicians. One could not fault this soul singer’s stage presence.
Also demonstrating the ability to work with live backing as well as tracks came classical singer Teresa De Roberto dressed in exactly the right attire for her act.
Essex singer Johnny Mack was both well-presented and likeable. A vocalist that works self-contained and with a fifteen piece backing band, Mack is sure to be in demand.
In a budget-conscious market for live bands there are very few full time professional bands around. The Fabulous Feedback Band consist of four very talented musicians with excellent vocals. These lads reminded us that you cannot beat a live band!
Personality, presentation and performance. These were the words I constantly heard some 37 years ago, when I started in the business. One man that definitely took that advice on-board was the extremely talented first class performer Andy Crust, with his tribute to Frankie Valli. Anybody wanting to learn how to work a room would not go wrong to learn from the very likeable Andy.
Providing us with glamour came a face and legs that some people will recognize from the reality TV show T.O.W.I.E, female vocalist Shanna Taylor. Relatively new to the business Shanna will benefit from a few gigs under her belt.
Never use a C.D for backing it may work 99 times. But on your live performance it may jump. This happened to Rough Diamond a Neil Diamond tribute act. In my view, this performer lacks stage-presence. I visualised him hosting karaoke nights.
There are a numerous Blues Brother Tribute acts about, and so the market for this act is highly competitive. The Fabulous Blues Brothers closed the first session of Curtains-up. The act was very enjoyable but requires polishing in order to compete in this market.