Nashville favorite Annie Sellick captivated the audience at last Saturday’s Sessions at Steinway with a set of classic jazz tunes and conversation with host/interviewer Kelli Cox. Backed by a trio of Nashville’s finest (pianist Jody Nardone, bassist Jonathan Wires, and drummer Marcus Finnie) Annie led off with one of her favorites, Accentuate the Positive. After confessing that scat singing was a challenge for her, she promptly dispelled any doubts in that area with a scat chorus of “trading fours” with drummer Finnie, followed by a nuanced and swinging drum solo illustrating why Marcus is one of the most in-demand drummers around.
Here’s an excerpt of the session, from the TJBS podcast page:Next up was a lovely and haunting ballad, The Lies of Handsome Men, followed by a good-natured rendition of I Can’t Give You Anything But Love in which the singer showed her scat chops, this time trading fours with pianist Nardone. Her rapport with the other musicians and the audience was evident, with everyone having a great time. Throughout the session, the audience learned about the singer’s life and career, starting with her early musical development, her beginnings as a jazz singer with guitarist Roland Gresham, performing and recording with the likes of Jeff Hamilton and Tamir Hendelman, and her more recent collaborations with husband Pat Bergeson and The Hot Club of Nashville. Closing with afternoon was a duo performance of If I Were A Bell with Kelli Cox leaving her interview role for a turn on the piano. The musical rapport between these two was evident as well, closing the afternoon on a warm note.
This event marked the one-year anniversary of the Sessions with Steinway series, which is establishing itself as a creative and original contribution to the city’s musical landscape. The series has been steadily growing in popularity, attracting a loyal following of regular patrons.
Sessions at Steinway is modeled after the award-winning series Inside the Actors’s Studio, and was conceived by saxophonist and TJBS Vice-President, Rahsaan Barber. It offers audiences the rare chance to hear unique and personal accounts of life both on and away from the stage. The “sessions” will include short performances and a Q&A segment for audience interaction.