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Steve Maddock: news

Impromptu Cabaret Festival - June 23, 2018

"My Broadway Jazzography"

 

My first love is jazz. As a boy, I’d spend hours on our living room floor in front of my parents’ record player, listening to Frank Sinatra, Nat “King” Cole, Louis Armstrong, and the Tommy Dorsey Band. I’m not even sure why my parents had those records; they never listened to them. When I was ten, I bought my first jazz recording: a cassette tape of Count Basie’s Greatest Hits.
My second love is musical theatre. As a teenager, I was bitten by the bug when I auditioned for a community production of The Sound of Music and was cast in the role of Rolf Gruber, delivery boy and love interest of Liesl von Trapp. For me, this was the beginning of a steady stream of musicals spanning more than three decades. 

Join jazz pianist Sharon Minemoto and myself, as we combine my two loves and present an autobiographical collection of popular show tunes, all with an unmistakable jazz twist!     My first love is jazz. As a boy, I’d spend hours on our living room floor in front of my parents’ record player, listening to Frank Sinatra, Nat “King” Cole, Louis Armstrong, and the Tommy Dorsey Band. I’m not even sure why my parents had those records; they never listened to them. When I was ten, I bought my first jazz recording: a cassette tape of Count Basie’s Greatest Hits.

My second love is musical theatre. As a teenager, I was bitten by the bug when I auditioned for a community production of The Sound of Music and was cast in the role of Rolf Gruber, delivery boy and love interest of Liesl von Trapp. For me, this was the beginning of a steady stream of musicals spanning more than three decades. 

My first love is jazz. As a boy, I’d spend hours on our living room floor in front of my parents’ record player, listening to Frank Sinatra, Nat “King” Cole, Louis Armstrong, and the Tommy Dorsey Band. I’m not even sure why my parents had those records; they never listened to them. When I was ten, I bought my first jazz recording: a cassette tape of Count Basie’s Greatest Hits.


My second love is musical theatre. As a teenager, I was bitten by the bug when I auditioned for a community production of The Sound of Music and was cast in the role of Rolf Gruber, delivery boy and love interest of Liesl von Trapp. For me, this was the beginning of a steady stream of musicals spanning more than three decades. 


Join jazz pianist Sharon Minemoto and myself, as we combine my two loves and present an autobiographical collection of popular show tunes, all with an unmistakable jazz twist!

 

Shows are at the Havana Theatre, 1212 Commercial Drive, Vancouver. Thursday, June 28 @ 7:30 pm, and also Friday, June 29 @ 9 pm. For more info, or to purchase tickets: www.impromptucabaret.com    

Memory Cafe - what's the buzz? - July 13, 2009

Here's a review of my recent album that was published on EJazzNews.com:

Steve Maddock just happens to be, as the promotional one-sheet states “... one of Canada's most versatile vocal talents,” and one listen to the music in “Memory Cafe,” is more than sufficient to affirm this statement. Maddock let's it all hang out here whether singing solo, with a small combo or a 20-piece big band, the vocalist provides a shining performance on what turns out to be a gem of an album. Involved in jazz music, his first love, for over two decades, Maddock has been a soloist for an array of groups from the Vancouver Chamber Choir, The Pacific Baroque Orchestra, The Dal Richards Jazz Orchestra, to credits in theatre and film.

Inspired by Joe Henderson's “Lush Life: The Music of Billy Strayhorn,” “Memory Cafe” is the vocalists second album following his self-titled debut of 2000 and what a breakout album it is.

Containing fifteen diverse songs, the repertoire includes such standards as the Dietz/Schwartz song “Alone Together,” Carl Fischer's “You've Changed,” to Johnny Mercer's immortal “Autumn Leaves” and James Taylor's pop tune “Secret O' Life.” However, the majority of the selections are original compositions contributed by Canadian songwriter and musician Craig Salkeld.

Being a Canadian production, Maddock naturally enlists some of the country's finest jazz musicians among them saxophonists Campbell Ryga and Ross Taggart, bassist Jodi Proznick, trumpeters Brad Turner and Kent Wallace as well as guitarist Bill Coon and drummer Craig Scott who contributes one of the finer numbers with “Flyin' To Florida.” Singer Bess Durey accompanies Maddock on the Salkeld original “Solo,” and then again on the classic standard “Alone Together” where both vocalists do a bit of scatting.

The highlights are too many to mention in depth but of the songs not to be missed, one needs to check out two of the big band burners on the disc which are “So He Lies,” and “How Did We End Up Like This,” where Maddock fronts an orchestra with stellar results. One heck of an arrangement to Taylor's “Secret O' Life” makes this song the signature tune of the album. Provided with a slight Brazilian slant, “I've Got A Secret For You” sounds like a smooth samba and is another winner of a number featuring Coon's delicate guitar riffs.

Some of the softer ballad pieces that Maddock caresses with a gentle touch are the title track, “This Is Gonna Be Some Fun,” and the beautiful “Somebody Pinch Me.” Gifted with soothing baritone vocals, Maddock at times sings and sounds a bit like the American jazz singer Alan Harris but still manages to strike a unique chord of his own. Kudos to Steve Maddock - for he has certainly produced one of the outstanding male jazz vocal albums of the year.

Ed Blanco - EJazzNews.com

Memory Cafe - what's the buzz? - June 25, 2009

I was fortunate enough to get my new CD into the hands of three jazz icons - pianist Ellis Marsalis (Ellis Marsalis Trio), bassist Ron Carter (Miles Davis Quintet) and drummer Ed Thigpen (Oscar Peterson Trio). Here's what these men had to say about Memory Cafe:


"What a refreshing vocal album! From the quick tempo of How Did We End Up Like This, to the bossa nova groove in I've Got A Secret For You, to the ballad When You Were Sent From Heaven, and last but certainly not least, the treatment of Autumn Leaves. Wonderful disc...a pleasure to listen to...again and again..."

 Ron Carter - jazz bassist

 

  "My wife and I have been enjoying your CD immensely. The Love Supreme statement (in There Is No Greater Love) is classic. The title track is also great. It is a pleasure to hear a recording using original lyrics and modern jazz arrangements without pandering to a listening audience or going "out" to show how hip they are. Great job."

 Ellis Marsalis - jazz pianist

 

 “I am quite impressed with your singing, particularly the two pieces that you scat on. Very good indeed! Your voice and phrasing are both a lot like Mel Torme´s, which is meant as a compliment! One of the great singers of our time…”

 Ed Thigpen – jazz drummer

Memory Cafe - what's the buzz? - March 29, 2009

Reviews of my new album are slowly starting to trickle in. Here are a few that were published this past week:

"Anyone who gets out at night on the West Coast knows Steve Maddock is a terrific singer who can tackle different musical forms. But who knew about his arranging skills?

Check out Memory Cafe, his latest release, a collection of original songs by Craig Salkeld (the arrangements of which aren't credited), and standard jazz tunes, carefully mapped out by the singer. One of these, opening track There Is No Greater Love, has a very cool guitar and bass line that breaks into a swing beat, over which Maddock croons and purrs his lines. You've Changed has a similar guitar-bass-drums riff, only this one breaks tempo for some vocal passages, then segues into a 12/8 blues. And Maddock goes the Bobby Mcferrin route for his a cappella version of Autumn Leaves, his voice taking on the bass, percussion and trumpet parts.

The material comes in many forms - duos with pianist Miles Black, small group numbers (with Black, guitarist Bill Coon, bassist Jodi Proznick and drummer Craig Scott), and tracks written for a horn section. The leader sings with such aplomb you wonder why Michael Bublé gets all the attention in Vancouver when this city has talents like Steve Maddock."

(Marke Andrews - The Vancouver Sun)

"Sometimes a great voice can make the difference between a mediocre recording and great music. That is certainly the case on Steve Maddock's Memory Cafe.

On each song, Maddock's smooth, rich vocal delivery makes his vision for this record come alive. You've Changed is a blues-infused wonder while Autumn Leavesis fun, full of energy and contains some scatting that rivals jazz greats of old. Somebody Pinch Me is cheeky yet seductive and while I was more familiar with James Taylor's slightly sweeter version of The Secret of Life, Maddock pulls it off nicely...

Most of the tracks found here are smartly crafted and well chosen, giving jazz fans much to celebrate. 
Memory Cafe certainly makes for a memorable listening experience."
 

(TheCelebrityCafe.com)

Kind words from a great jazz singer... - March 20, 2009

I recently found this blog on Karin Plato's website. Karin is a fabulous jazz singer who I've had the pleasure of getting to know over the past few years...

"On the CD listening front, I was recently blown away by Vancouver vocalist Steve Maddock’s album Memory Cafe. Steve is an unbelievably talented vocalist with a full range rich voice and the ability to improvise and swing hard. His disc includes many wonderful original compositions penned by Saskatchewan born Craig Salkeld. When I was a University Student in Saskatoon I used to hear Craig sing and play piano in a cover band called Cruise Control. They performed all kinds of great repertoire in this band made up of local jazz guys. Craig can really sing! And….he certainly is an incredible composer and arranger. I think Steve has a really unique project because he has included some fantastic standards that we jazz vocalists all like to sing and then this brand new repertoire, which is truly new to the world. Steve also arranged some of the standards in a fresh and hip way. From the first unison lines written in his introduction to There Is No Greater Love, I was hooked, and I had not previously heard such an exciting rendition of You've Changed (also Steve’s own arrangement). Never had I thought of the tune in that way, and by that I mean to say that as I listened, I was completely surprised by this new spin on the song. His rendition truly made me hear a familiar tune in a brand new way. Wonderful when that happens I think!"

Welcome to the Memory Cafe... - February 1, 2009

After much anticipation, (and a few unexpected hurdles along the way...) I'm extremely excited to announce the release of my new jazz CD, Memory Cafe! This album features a wonderful collection of original songs by Craig Salkeld, along with a very tasty mix of jazz standards thrown in for good measure. The band is downright scary: Miles Black on piano, Bill Coon on guitar, Jodi Proznick on bass, Craig Scott on drums, Campbell Ryga and Ross Taggart on saxes, Brad Turner and Kent Wallace on trumpets, Rod Murray on trombone and Elliot Polsky on percussion. To top it all off, I'm joined on a couple of tunes by Bess Durey, a fabulous jazz singer who'll knock your socks off! The record can now be purchased on itunes, or send me an email to order a hard copy.

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