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  • Clare Teal -
    another from super cool US Producer Don Was asking me in what key I d like to sing Van s beautiful ballad Carrying A Torch I picked my jaw up off the floor and got to work listening to as many versions as I possibly could I very much enjoy singing with other people I love the interaction and spontaneity and always try to open my mind and react to what I hear The next morning we drove to London and arrived at British Grove I met the team and had a couple of run throughs with the band then Van himself appeared said a brief hi and seconds later the red light went on I couldn t quite believe what was happening I was sitting feet away from one of my musical heroes with a live band playing and we were actually going to sing together The session literally lasted about 15 minutes and was one of the most wonderful and surreal experiences of my career to date A long time has passed and I ve often since thought to myself did that actually happen Well I m thrilled to announce that Carrying A Torch will appear on Van s brand new album Duets Re Working the Catalogue set for release on March 16th As if singing with the legendary Mr Morrison wasn t enough since I ve found out who the other collaborators are I ve been pinching myself on a regular basis Michael Buble Steve Winwood Bobby Womack who sadly died shortly after Mark Knopfler Taj Mahal Mavis Staples Natalie Cole George Benson Gregory Porter PJ Proby Joss Stone Georgie Fame Mick Hucknall Chris Farlowe and Van s daughter Shana Morrison Zoe Ball on BBC Radio 2 had the world exclusive play this morning of Real Real

    Original URL path: http://www.clareteal.co.uk/index.php/van-morrisons-dream/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Clare Teal -
    went on the cancellation never came but what was I going to talk about At the end of last year we recorded an album with our Mini Big Band thinking we d leisurely release it sometime in 2015 so I was somewhat surprised when Muddy suggested a couple of weeks before the interview that we should bring the record out NOW Big hand for Manager Alison who has been flat out getting everything organised and ta dah At Your Request will be here for the Valentine s Day album launch at Cadogan Hall A collection of the songs most requested by audiences we were initially going to call it It s on This One As the music was ready to go I sent a copy to Graham s producer Malcolm and thankfully he liked what he heard and picked a couple of tracks to play We listen to the show most weeks and enjoy Graeme s acerbic sarcasm and witty banter but I was fearful of being in direct line of a Norton withering one liner As it goes he couldn t have been more friendly and supportive an absolutely terrific bloke Mind you Muddy had baked a batch of homemade dog biscuits for his fur babies Madge and Bailey which I m sure endeared us to him I ate one to make sure they were alright in fact I d happily have eaten a few more Our dog Alan wasn t remotely grateful for his We drove back from the interview to find our latest gadget The Spiralizer waiting for us in the porch Basically it s a plastic machine that makes noodles out of vegetables meaning if you re on a diet did I mentioned I was on a diet you can fool yourself into thinking you re

    Original URL path: http://www.clareteal.co.uk/index.php/new-cd-at-your-request/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Clare Teal -
    different artists During the cab ride from the hotel to Hyde Park we witnessed an unbelievably long but very jolly picnicking snake of music lovers queuing for the limited number of 5 Prommers tickets released shortly before each performance It was significantly longer than I d ever previously seen but then it was the Last Night of the Proms with a fantastic lineup Sakari Oramo conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra We arrived at the park in time to see Tony Blackburn leading the crowd in a teasing rendition of YMCA yes we did join in There was an exhilarating display of percussion excellence from The Dhol Foundation too Both fans of singer songwriter Rufus Wainwright we were beyond thrilled to hear him backed by the BBC Concert Orchestra he was just one of the many great singers to follow perhaps the standout being South African soprano Pumeza Matshkiza who is surely tipped for global opera domination The headline act was Earth Wind and Fire Any fears that they might no longer have been up to the job were immediately quashed within the first two bars After that the annual link up to the Royal Albert Hall where much waving of flags singing and bobbing up and down ensued The next day we headed back to the park for Radio 2 s Festival in A Day Rock legend Chrissie Hynde opened the event in fine electric form followed by fabulous folkies Bellowhead then rising country star Kacey Musgraves Jo Whiley and I had the great honour of introducing jazz soul sensation Gregory Porter to the 50 000 strong crowd and whilst Paloma kept the Faith I entered the Radio 2 TeePee to hang out with Aneka Rice and Richard Allinson and interview the great Billy Ocean Just time to eat a

    Original URL path: http://www.clareteal.co.uk/index.php/music-music-all-the-way/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Clare Teal -
    Prom at The Royal Albert Hall took place last Friday night in front of a roaring capacity crowd Duke Grant Windsor led the Ellington band and Count James Pearson the Basie brigade in a neck and neck meeting of thirty four multi skilled musical minds The idea was to celebrate everything glorious about the Swing era using the repertoire of two giants of the jazz and big band world For one night The Royal Albert took on the air of the Savoy Ballroom in Harlem circa 1937 although we set our time span from 1930 1949 in order to mine the very juiciest musical morsels Ellington and Basie never actually did battle during this period which meant we could let our imaginations run truly wild This magical time when big bands reigned supreme at the top of the pop charts was focused all around dancing so to give a flavor of what the atmosphere would have been like the fabulous Jazz Co Tech dancers put on a topflight display of all elements of Terpsichore The players were assembled from the big glimmering pool of this country s most amazing jazz and big band talent The emphasis during the swing era was mainly on the band leaders the arrangers and the soloists however in my mind the singers were just as important so we employed awesome singing capabilities of the fabulous Basement Jaxx vocalist Ms Vula Malinga and jazz sensation Gregory Porter who flew in just in time for the final rehearsal on Friday morning no pressure then I got to sing a few tunes but mainly my job was to MC The battle was staged in rounds which were marked using an antique boxing bell which I very much enjoyed ringing The competition was properly fierce climaxing in a specially

    Original URL path: http://www.clareteal.co.uk/index.php/the-battle-of-the-big-bands/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Clare Teal -
    the stage of the Royal Albert Hall and commence a battle of the bands Duke Ellington v Count Basie Duke Grant Windsor will lead the Ellington side and Count James Pearson will head up the Basie team Back in the day when swing was pop celebrated bands would go head to head the winner being the band most popular with the dancers lest we forget the big band era was ALL about the dancing The original Battle of the bands generally took place at The Savoy Ballroom in Harlem and that s where you would find the hippest lindy hoppers in town a fantastic establishment that prided itself on its non discrimination policy rich poor black white as long as you had the entrance fee anybody could get in to enjoy the incredible music pumping out of that building Chick Webb held the residency from 1931 till his untimely death in 1939 aged just 34 all bands feared drummer Chick s relentless grooves which sent the dancers wild We are aiming to re create come of that frenzy and excitement This particular battle to the best of my knowledge never actually took place which allows me to totally indulge my musical fantasies Duke Ellington had impeccable taste and was a master of composition he invented and reinvented the genre countless times over Count Basie was a man of unbeatable riffs and groove so by using the music of these two big band god s I m hoping we can cover a lot of territory The concert will be broadcast live on BBC Radios 2 3 It is also being filmed so you can see the entire shebang on BBC 4 Sunday August 17th In addition to presenting the show I ll be singing too along with some very special guests

    Original URL path: http://www.clareteal.co.uk/index.php/battle-of-the-bands/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Clare Teal -
    to see him bounding around The vets isn t very far away and he was still decidedly cheery when we walked him in The nurse went through some paper work and weighed him then we had to say goodbye Again he didn t seem bothered at all hardly gave us a backwards glance Back in the office I had loads of work to do this week our radio show comes live from the Cheltenham Jazz Festival with special guests legendary percussionist Billy Cobham saxophonist Julian Siegel and jazz singer extraordinaire Liane Carroll In addition to spinning records and chatting to guests I m also going to be singing a few songs with my band so there s a lot to sort out but it was a very long morning waiting for the phone call to say Alan s little operation had been a success and that he was awake At two o clock we went to pick him up thankfully he was really pleased to see us I had feared he d never speak to us again in fact he looked most fetching with a cute little plastic funnel round his neck with green flowers on it sadly though it wasn t big enough but the next size up made him look Nipper His Master s Voice dog only with the gramophone bell wrapped round his head We ended up with a blue inflatable collar neck brace which gives him a nautical dog overboard sort of air I m just hoping it doesn t pop in the next 10 days As the evening wore on and the pain killers wore off a very sorry little puppy emerged he didn t know what to do with himself and to be honest no one slept much last night This morning however is

    Original URL path: http://www.clareteal.co.uk/index.php/poor-alan/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Clare Teal -
    on stage by the BBC Concert Orchestra and fellow singers Matthew Ford and AJ Brown if you missed it it will be on the BBC iPlayer for a few more days Failing that look out for the select number of Doris Day concerts we re doing in various parts of the country this year Whilst I was in my own little Doris world Muddy was on a mission and rang me from the crazy junk shop in Glastonbury with good news I ve found the perfect cookery book stand and a few other bits and bobs Brilliant Don t you hate it when the book won t stay open on the page you need and you keep having to wash your gloop filled hands to open it again and again But then you probably all have cookery book stands I opened the door to see Muddy and Lucy our hero s girlfriend staggering under the weight of said stand imagine my surprise to see a 4ft x 2 5ft solid wooden chapel lectern circa 1930 I d supposed the other bits and bobs to be ornaments or perhaps candlesticks No they came in numerous other car loads first up a decrepit red velvet chez lounge crying out for a good stuffing and a firm hand followed by two enormous wicker garden chairs Anyone who knows Muddy will tell you this is not unusual behavior Mud loves doing up old furniture in fact if you stand too long anywhere in our house you ll either be painted or up cycled in some way I can t believe it s nearly Easter Musical director Grant Windsor and I are much looking forward to making our Bury debut The Met is a venue I ve heard great things about That s on Wednesday

    Original URL path: http://www.clareteal.co.uk/index.php/muddys-been-buying/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Clare Teal -
    I looked up thinking really in Clacton Well you never know I signed the CD and went on my merry way A few months later I had an email from Annie of Clacton to say Doris had enjoyed my record A few days later a lovely parcel arrived in the post containing a signed CD from Doris herself This now takes pride of place in the office I ve been a big fan of the great lady s from being a tiny tot me not her Doris was just 16 years old when she started touring with big bands in 1940 first with Bob Crosby and his Bob Cats then Les Brown and His Band of Renown In her book Doris Day My Story she writes of the rigours of her schedule back then I did get a pretty good view of the country from the bus window but the strenuous physical demands of touring of performing every night until very late of having to squeeze in rehearsals of trying to get laundry done buy new clothes get to the hairdresser of living out of a suitcase but having to look glamorous every night all this made band travel a challenge to survive Especially when you re only 16 In tribute to Doris and her fantastic catalogue of music that has entertained millions of people Radio 2 s Friday Night Is Music Night is to pay its own homage to Doris this week I have the honor of presenting the evening and will also be doing a few special concerts singing the songs of Doris Day with our small Hollywood style orchestra starting at Chelsea s glorious Cadogan Hall on May 24th Believe it or not the great lady will be 90 years old tomorrow by all accounts enjoying a

    Original URL path: http://www.clareteal.co.uk/index.php/doris-day-celebration/ (2016-02-15)
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