Cameo – Concert Review – Jazz Café, London

Posted in Music, Uncategorized on October 26, 2012 by kennypalmer

The intimate Camden venue hosted the first of the veteran Soul funksters 5 night residency at the Jazz Café on Monday night.

The lengthy absence from these shores and the fact the band haven’t produced an album for over a decade was probably behind the decision to perform in such a small venue to a crowd predominantly made up of middle age hipsters and hardcore fans.

Adorned in trademark red top hat and somewhat disconcertingly red codpiece over his trousers 57 year old Larry Blackmon signaled his presence with his signature “ow” as he opened the night with “She’s Strange” his mellifluous voice not dulled by the passing of the years.

The now portly front man was assisted vocally by band member Tomi Jenkins. The crowd was here to hear the hits which the band duly obliged.

Blackmon eased through the back catalogue singing hits from Single Life, Candy and Attack Me with Your love; disappointingly he ceded lead vocals for a lot of the songs to Tomi Jenkins who was the more dynamic of the two on stage.

Blackmon’s distinctive drawl was evident as he went through the songs although he was a less than animated stage presence than from his hay days when he was renowned for his outlandish, in-your-face stage presence.

The band was slick with the soul funk music complimenting Blackmon’s voice without drowning him out. The night had a feel of warm up for the upcoming nights during the week as after belting out an  up tempo version of  Word Up he departed the stage and disappointingly did not return despite the crowd urging the band to return for an encore. Larry Blackmon and band were only on stage for an hour disappointing and short changing an appreciative, welcoming crowd who had come to the funk the night away. A welcome and enjoyable trip down a funk fused memory lane although. Word up!

Cameo are celebrating 33 years in music, Word Up and Candy their timeless classics, which were 80’s hits gives you a feel of their music.

D’Angelo – Concert Review – Brixton Academy, London

Posted in Music on February 5, 2012 by kennypalmer

The hottest ticket in town on a bitterly cold night was the final night of D’Angelo’s eagerly anticipated comeback gig at the South London venue.Despite a hiatus of twelve years since his last album the Grammy Awarding winning Voodoo an expectant audience where not quite sure what to expect.

Any doubts as to whether the singer dubbed the R&B Jesus could still reproduce the quality of his singing showcased in the two Albums Brown Sugar and Voodoo was soon allayed.

Aptly he opened the night with Voodoo‘s lead track Playa Playa. Adorned with  guitar with what was to be a feature of the performance it was sung  to a more funk rhythm possibly an indication of where he’s going musically on the rumored new third album: “James River.”

Vocally tonight his falsetto singing when going through songs of the Voodoo album was reminiscent of Prince. The band bringing a funkier sound to what’s considered a classic neo soul Album.

Clearly at ease and comfortable to be performing live again the performance had zest and energy. Returning for an encore alone on stage without the band he performed a medley of songs from his Brown Sugar album on keyboard. Teasing female members of the audience when he got up to pretend to pull his top of when singing Untitled (How Does It Feel)

The band returned to the stage as he performed two new songs from the as yet released new album. The tone funk fused with rock. A welcome return from the Virginian son of a preacher man leaving the audience once again regaining the faith in his huge musical talent.

D’Angelo has made two Albums Brown Sugar and Voodoo. A song from each album My Lady and Untitled (How Does It Feel)  gives you a feel of his music.

Ledisi – Concert Review – Scala, London

Posted in Music on January 24, 2012 by kennypalmer

Hot on the tail of last years concerts by Neo Soul heavyweights Jill Scott in December and a summer appearance by Erykah Badu at the Brixton Academy, Ledisi made her much anticipated return to these shores at the Scala on Friday.

This was her first headlining tour to promote her latest album Pieces of Me. The former iconic cinema, which isn’t the greatest of music venues, was full to capacity with an expectant and knowledgeable crowd.

An exuberant Ledisi bounded onto the stage to an appreciative crowd in this intimate of venues flanked by two backing singers and her band.

She opened her set with songs from the Grammy nominated Pieces of Me. The quality and full range of her singing voice resonating in the intimate environment, the crowd drinking it all in.

As now seems de riguer with all female neo soul singers she belted out the obligatory gender empowerment single, the albums title track, pieces of me to a delighted crowd.

A rapport with the audience instantly formed she effortlessly moved into songs with a rockier feel from her fourth Album Turn Me Loose before treating the crowd to the standout songs Goin’ Thru Changes” and  Higher Than This”.

She seemed to be enjoying herself as much as the crowd was enjoying the concert, leaving the stage to venture into the audience while singing numbers off Lost and Found.

The highlight of the show her free form version of Alright. A song quite personal to her as she shared with the audience she was thinking of quitting the music industry before penning the song.

The song showcased her singing range as she improvised into scat version of the song to the joy of the crowd who went delirious.

Thanking the crowd at the close she joking informed the crowd her name was “Ledisi” and not  “Lydisi” as an uniformed music press were dubbing her and hoping she’d be back again at a bigger venue.

One of neo souls best kept secrets definitely deserved to be back performing at a bigger venue after wowing this crowd.

For those new to Ledisi I recommend listening to Lost & Found which in my opinion is her best album.

Jermain Defoe: A case for the attack

Posted in Football on October 22, 2011 by kennypalmer

“It’s the strongest I’ve been for a while – probably the strongest I’ve felt in my whole career.” A buoyant Jermain Defoe post match at St James Park after scoring his 5th goal in 9 games.

The lead up to the game was dominated by the ongoing debate amongst Spurs fan on who should partner Adebayor up front Jermain Defoe or
Rafael Van Der Vaart.

Spurs find themselves in the enviable position of having three forwards in goal scoring form. It leaves Harry Redknapp with the conundrum of how best to utilize them for the benefit of the team.

Comparing the two players is as absurd as comparing apples with oranges as they are two totally different footballers with different skill
sets who will both be key to Spurs achieving Champions League qualification again.

Many have already extolled the virtues’ of the Dutch maestro. Highlighting the contribution of the lilywhites goal scoring dynamo Jermain
Defoe is long overdue

An insipid first half attacking display from Spurs against Newcastle was transformed by the introduction of Jermain Defoe,when he  replaced  a disappointing VDV who was anonymous in the first half.

It took him just five minutes to score with a trade mark finish; controlling the ball, turning and getting his short off in one swift movement.

Harry Redknapp after the game admitted he should have started Defoe.  “It was a great finish from Jermain, and if I’d been really clever I might have started him, and we might have won. “

Brad Friedel  was of a similar opinion: “When JD came on he played really well. He gave us a spark and it was another great finish.”

Despite starting the season in great goal scoring form he still has his detractors amongst some spurs fans who seem obsessed with pointing out his weaknesses rather appreciating a healthy goal return and a burgeoning partnership with Emmanuel Adebayor.

People can blind you with statistics about how many touches a player makes in the pitch in a certain area but the most important statistic for any striker is how many times they  put the ball in the back of the net!

“That’s what you get judged on as a striker, scoring goals, and I’m playing well,” JD post match.

“When you get into a rhythm like this then you want to play. If you’re playing well then I believe that you should play.”

A goal return of five goals in nine games is not too shabby in anybody’s book and should warrant a starting berth for Spurs.

Spurs best team display of the season was the 4-0 demolition of “King Kenny’s” media darlings Liverpool. Built on the foundation of the central midfield partnership of Scott Parker and Luka Modric and the fluid embryonic strike partnership of Jermain Defoe and Emmanuel  Adebayor, who were both on the score sheet, a game incidentally which  VDV did not start.

Both players linked really well and stretched the Liverpool defence all game. Given an extended run out together Adebayor and Defoe will both score 15+ goals apiece and propel Spurs to a champion’s leagues position.

If VDV has to be shoe-horned into the starting eleven, which Redknapp seems inclined to continue to do, it has to be in the right midfield position, so as to keep Spurs best player Luka Modric in his best position centre midfield and not break up the goal scoring partnership of Defoe and Adebayor.

A major contributory factor of Spurs best ever season in the premiership, 2009/10,finishing fourth and securing a Champions League place was JD’s 18 goals!

He signaled his intent when he scored the 3rd hat-trick of his career in a 5–1 away victory over Hull City in the second game of the season.

The highlight of the season for JD on a personal level was his five goal haul against Wigan in the 9-1 demolition. This included the second fastest hat-trick  in Premier League history, which was scored in seven minutes.

In doing so, Defoe became only the third player to score five goals in one Premier League match after Alan Shearer and Andy Cole.  Dimitar Berbatov has subsequently managed to equal this feat.

He finished the season with a goal tally of 24 goals in all competitions. A similar goal return this season and Spurs will again achieve a champions league place.

With Wayne Rooney suspended for the group stage of Euro 12 a place on the plane to Poland and Ukraine is up for grabs for an English striker on form. Extra motivation if needed for Defoe to continuing playing at the top of his game for Spurs and England.

It’s ironic that JD’s good start to the 2010–11 season was curtailed while on international duty scoring his first international hat-trick which was the first hat-trick at the new Wembley against Bulgaria, where he picked up an injury.

Defoe  has stated  in interviews that the way he is  playing at the moment  with renewed sharpness that he  feels  he  should be playing.

It’s a sentiment shared by a lot of Spurs fans. On current form he warrants selection ahead of VDV. JD is a consummate professional with a genuine affinity to the club and fans. You’ll find no diva style histrionics if not selected.

Come Sunday evening I fully expect to be singing the popular refrain: “Jermain Defoe he’s a Yiddo” after another brace for the lilywhites. COYS.












Manchester City V Manchester United Preview

Posted in Football on August 2, 2011 by kennypalmer


The two Manchester giants resume hostilities on Sunday in the eagerly anticipated season opener the FA Community shield.

Both teams come into the game in good form being unbeaten in their pre-season warm-ups.

United played five games in the US this summer, winning them all and scoring 20 goals in the process including the notable scalp of Barcelona in a 2-1 victory in Washington DC.

While City ended their warm-ups with an impressive 3-0 victory over Internazionale inthe Dublin Super Cup notable for the impressive performance by Mario Balotelli who scored the opener for City.

All eyes on Sunday will be on £38m new signing, Argentinian international, Sergio Aguero who is scheduled to make his debut.

Another possible cameo sideshow could be the return of want away Carlos Tevez against his former club.

United have also strengthened their squad this summer with the signings of Phil Jones and winger Ashley Young.

The Barclays premier league champions go into the game as favourites but face strong opponents in City who finished the season strongly in overtaking Arsenal and securing third spot into the group stages of the champions’ league for the first time.

Match odds of Man United to beat Man City are priced at 13/10. You could win £57.50 with a £25 free bet.

The last time these teams met in the same venue in the semi-final of the FA Cup, City were 1-0 victors en route to eventually lifting the FA Cup.

With that in mind this game should prove very competitive with both teams eager to put down a marker for the start of the Barclays premier league.

Although both teams boast an array of attacking options games between these two are generally tight encounters.

You can get good value bets for a draw a 1-1 draw is priced at 23/4 while a likely 0-0 is 13/2.