Laura Oakes Presents with Kerri Watt & Twinnie - The Green Note
The first night in what hopefully will become a regular event saw Laura Oakes invite two guests along for a highly entertaining evening.
First act of the evening was Twinnie, who we've been looking forward to seeing live for some time since picking up her rather excellent EP at C2C where we also caught a glimpse only of her live set.
She opened with "Don't Just Fell Like Home" and was able to deliver a very strong stripped back version, the huge production of the released version being replaced by just Twinnie on guitar with an additional acoustic guitarist. The stand out feature though were her vocals which on the final "homes" of the song showed a great range. There was a strong song about her Grandad, "Looking Out For You", while "Social Babies" made good use of the latest social media terms.
Whenever you see mention of Twinnie the first thing mentioned is her appearance on a tv show rather than the fact that she was one of the co-writers of "Black and White" one of the stand out tracks on The Shires debut album and it was another co write, this time with Lucie Silvas, that provided the next song "Superhero". It had a touch of Lana Del Ray about it in its phrasing and was very good. To demonstrate just how good a writer she is "I like You Better When I''m Drunk" was full of some neat plays on words. It was time to slow things down and Twinnie moved to piano for "Lie To Me" from her EP which has the feel of a classic and was a chance to display some quite extraordinary vocals. To close we got a modern pop classic in "Cool" with the raw nature of the performance accentuating the words even more. Time constraints robbed us of a Christmas themed song but neverthe less it was a highly impressive performance.
Kerri Watt got her set off to an excellent start with a visit back to her debut EP for "Who's Loving Me Now?". It was followed by "Old School Love" with it's gently sung verse leading into a beautifully flowing chorus. Showing a change in style the next song "Keep Rolling The Dice" about her Mum, had a slow bluesy feel to it and was a great piece of songwriting.
It was over to the piano for the next song "Sorrow" which was an old song that had been borrowed by her brother also a musician who was getting such great responses from it Kerri decided to reclaim it. She stayed at the piano for a song that opened a lot of doors, the big vocals and piano chords that come with "Long Way Home".
The incessantly catchy "Paris" was next with its "part time lover" refrain and a hook of "Whoa oh oh oh's!". it's been great to see Kerri again over the last few months and let's hope that will continue into 2018 as this a great little set.
Laura Oakes does not make life easy for herself, not only inviting Kerri and Twinnie as support but also playing after busking for charity on the streets during one of the coldest snaps in recent years.
Tonight accompanied with just Pete Darling on guitar and a cajon player things were to start with a run through of the tracks off her rather fabulous latest acoustic EP, the uptempo cheeky joy of "Glitter", "Lazy" and the great details in the songwriting on "Nashville Stole your Girl" all sung impeccably. The inevitable "Elton John" moment duly arrived, and just when it seemed to have been archived from her sets there was a reappearance for "Rocket Man!"
Things really kicked up another gear though when Laura was left to play solo and went back to her debut acoustic ep for a beautiful rendition of "Whatever You Want". This was followed by an excellent "Better In Blue Jeans" where they really nailed the chorus home and "Dreaming" was also from the top drawer. This was Laura in top form, with "Snakes and Ladders" never sounding better with the audience providing the required support on backing vocals.
There was a welcome back to the stage for Kerri Watt and a cover of the song made famous by The Dixie Chicks and Patty Griffin - "Let Him Fly" with Kerri taking the first verse and Laura the second.
That was to have been it however public demand got Laura and her guitar back to the stage for a special moment with her cover of "Angel From Montgomery".
This was a highly entertaining evening and if it becomes a regular event then so much the better.