Carleen Anderson vocals/piano
Orphy Robinson vibraphone
Crispin Robinson percussion
Samy Bishai violin
Renell Shaw bass
Carleen Anderson is American music royalty. Her mother, Vicki Anderson, was James Brown’s favourite vocalist and her stepfather Bobby Byrd founded the Famous Flames. Now Carleen – who relocated to London in 1990, becoming a Mercury-nominated star of soul and Acid Jazz through The Young Disciples and an epoch-defining solo career – honours her family’s history in Texas and Mississippi with ‘Cage Street Memorial’.
The project – there’s an award-winning album, a book and a stage show as well as a concert presentation – is a moving testament to Anderson’s gospel roots as the daughter and grand-daughter of Pentecostal preachers, and her personal journey from the Deep South to the UK, and thence to Bristol, where her musician son, Bobby, lives.
To hear Carleen Anderson’s astonishingly soulful voice backed by her own keyboards and an all-star quintet in the authentically churchy setting of St George’s is going to be one of the musical experiences of the year. It also acts as the official launch party for Bristol’s Americana Weekend, which follows in July (when we will be closed for building work as part of our capital project), and whose complete programme will be announced on the night.
‘For live performances you have to see Carleen Anderson at least three times in your life. She’s someone I’d hang around all day just to hear her sound check.’ AMY WINEHOUSE
‘She’s not just good, she‘s phenomenal. Carleen Anderson is one of a kind.’ JAMES BROWN
Carleen Anderson’s show launches the return of Bristol’s Americana weekend this summer, complete with a brand new name of River Town, which takes place between Friday 14 and Monday 17 July at Colston Hall.
Now in its third year, the weekend spans four days packed with a world-class programme of blues, gospel, country and bluegrass, from across the pond and closer to home.
This year’s line-up features the likes of country-pop duos The Shires and Ward Thomas, the highly-esteemed Mavis Staples, plus legendary artists Nick Lowe, Paul Carrack and Andy Fairweather Low among others, with more to be announced.
So grab your jacket: we’re heading on down to River Town.
The full line-up for this year’s weekend can be found here: colstonhall.org/RiverTown2017