Caro Emerald dazzles with every note

Last night my heart went a flutter, again.  I have a soft spot for the chanteuse and whilst flicking through the satellite channels I discovered last week, I came across a BBC Radio 2 performance that looked like it was recorded at the Radio Theatre at Broadcasting House. I’m not currently experiencing TV with an English language menu or program info, so I paused, wondering who she was; charming smile, elegant retro look, and she appeared to be wearing my Trilby.  Had I seen her on Jools? She reminded me of Camille O’Sullivan and the stage looked good – so I waited for her to crank it up, and oh was I glad I did!

Born Caroline Esmeralda van der Leeuw in Amsterdam, Holland thirty two years ago she attended the Amsterdam Conservatory, graduating in 2005 and debuted her recording career in 2009 with the single ‘Back It Up’. Written by songwriter, producer David Schreurs and Canadian Vince Degiorgio, an original demo recorded in 2007 didn’t  set the music world immediately alight. Pitched to a variety of labels it struggled to find a home, however a posting on YouTube is credited with increasing awareness of the tune, and an amount of radio airplay followed.

To paraphrase Miss Emerald, ‘my eyes went oooh and my ears went cooooo’

Her name rang a bell last night when the caption flashed up, but her voice slapped the same bell with a huge gong. ‘A Night Like This’ was the tune I knew her voice from. Released in 2009 it made it to the top of the Dutch, Romanian and Austrian charts but barely attracted attention in the UK, reaching just number 65 in the official chart. So what changed the game? Answer: her 2010 album, Deleted Scenes from the Cutting Room Floor. This studio album, released on the singers own Grandmono Records label, attained Gold or Platinum in five European countries and peaked at four in the British charts.

Brimming with great tunes, A Night Like This was the most successful song of the album and cemented her burgeoning reputation as an accomplished studio performer, with her winning the Dutch music, Edison Award for Best Female Artist in 2010. In Holland the album has racked up 300,000 plus in sales with a million copies sold globally. It’s an interesting mix of a variety of styles; quite a bit of dance-pop, and some with a sort of beautiful vocal waterfall that just engulfs you in a way that’s reminiscent of Amy Winehouse at her best, specifically The Other Woman, while Dr Wanna Do is simply a great jazz tune, but it’s the quicker tempo modern jazz beat with her sultry, yet crisp vocals that keep you listening – there aren’t any bad tracks on the album but her vocals skillfully carry you through the couple that lack a little depth. Of particular note: Just One Dance feels like the fifties, Absolutely Me is truly infectious, Dr Wanna Do is deliciously cheeky and That Man, track one on the album demands you listen, at least more than once, before you even get  to track two.

And what of her popularity on that most efficient barometer of popular culture, YouTube? Twenty-six million views and counting and I can only take credit for some of them since last night. Despite her success as a recording artist though I think it’s as a live artist that she will truly shine. Concert goers talk of  her wonderful stage presence and awareness of her audience. She’s flirtatious on stage but you know she’s telling you the truth. Every time. The ballads and the swing both work, but it’s the Sarah Vaughan influence I love. Her 2011 version of Brook Benton’s 1963 hit “You’re All I Want for Christmas”, is beautiful – sampled with the original version of the late Benton’s original recording. She’s touring the UK in September – wild horses will not keep me away from The Royal Festival Hall on September 14th.

Her new album The Shocking Miss Emerald will be out May 6th with a new single Liquid Lunch; nicely fused rhythm and guitar, then lay that sultry, cheeky vocal firmly on top; chorus; brilliant.  Ladies and gents we live in austere times, so do as the lady says; go Dutch. and don’t be shy. You know you Wanna Do.

External links & references

  1. Caro Emerald : Official Website : Note: South Bank on September 14th, 2013
  2. Radio 2 Live concert gallery
  3. Caro Emerald @ Amazon
  4. Track listing, Deleted Scenes From The Cutting Room Floor
  5. Official YouTube Channel
  6. The rise of the YouTube personality : RedCert.com

 

Total
0
Shares
Related Posts
Read More

Triumph to Troubles

Man bun bespoke freegan, kitsch retro ethical banh mi williamsburg drinking vinegar sustainable heirloom wolf hipster portland. Tacos…
Read More

Miss Caro Emerald: good for the soul

I'm sort of a Johnny-come-lately to Caro Emerald; it's a month or less since I discovered her on a BBC Radio 2 live performance late one evening. Fortuitous though, as I get the benefit of getting a lot of her latest album and on Monday of this week her new album, The Shocking Miss Emerald was released. This, the second studio album by the Dutch singer does not herald a huge shift or change in direction; she sounds much as I expected her to, the style is not starkly different. A short intro and then thirteen songs - mostly of the tempo and feel you'd expect of her. So why, I ask myself is this album so damn good?
Read More

‘I observe, I don’t chase’ : Amy Winehouse

There was a time when we were happy to look, listen and be entertained. Now, our appetite for minute, salacious detail has overun our media - and a performer like Amy Winehouse became as famous for her lifestyle, as for her awesome talent. But it's the awsome talent of Amy Winehouse that makes me smile today. Smile as much as I did seven years ago when I first saw her.
newsletter-subscription

Subscribe for the free weekly newsletter with the latest reviews and any current offers.

Total
0
Share