A sold out show of soulful jazz and blues.
A sold out show and a buzz of anticipation in the foyer pre-show. The gig was in the big room, I would think it holds up to three or four hundred. Nice dark setting; only drawback is that reviewers cannot see to write notes, ah well a small price to pay for atmosphere.
Two short opening sets from Amy Rose and Hannah McPhillimy, who later joined the band on backing vocals. Six piece band, drummer, electric guitar, bass, keys alto saxophone and trumpet. I think Linley Hamilton, trumpet, is also musical director and a kind of mentor and champion to Dana.
The back story, I suspect known to most of tonight’s audience and increasingly music fans all over Ireland, is that Dana is from the Southern States of USA, married a man from here has relocated to Lisburn. She has been singing around the local jazz and blues circuit. We are very lucky to have her in our midst, a stunning soul voice and great stage presence.
The set consisted of songs from the new EP interspersed with some well-chosen covers. The latter included top class versions of ‘A Change Going To Come’ and ‘Motherless Child’, put into the context of struggle in her introductions and sung with huge passion and feeling. It’s always difficult to place new self-written material among such works but I thought Dana own songs were up to the task.
‘Someone Else’s Love’, the title track ‘Crossing Lines’ and in particular ‘Carry You In’ are fine works that suit Dana’s style.
Dana Masters known as one of Northern Ireland's finest vocalists. © Bernie McAllister