CURRENTLY ON STAGE… with BEVERLEY KNIGHT

beverley-knightCURRENTLY ON STAGE is the article that features one artist or group at a time.  The intention is to present artists in a live performance setting (thus the “ON STAGE” part of the title) who record and perform and are relevant to today’s audiences (thus the “CURRENTLY” part of the title).  This article insures that I stay current and that NO SKIPS NO SCRATCHES is not just a nostalgic look back at the “good ol’ days.”  Whether us Baby Boomers realize it or not, there are always new artists appearing who truly are artists; music makers who go beyond sampled tracks and monotonous melodies devoid of musical changes.  Sometimes we have to go beyond our borders to discover such artists… artists so inventive, so polished, so widely accepted, acclaimed and accomplished that we have to ask ourselves, “How in the world is it that I never even heard of this great artist?”  One such great artist is the electrifyin’, Beverley Knight.  Born in Wolverhampton, England in 1973, Beverley has been cranking out European hits since 1995 with 7 studio albums and two greatest hits compilations under her belt.  This singer, songwriter, musician and record producer currently has her own record label, Hurricane Records.  Widely known as one of Britain’s greatest Soul Singers, Beverley sings with the energy and power of Tina Turner and Chaka Khan and the vocal beauty and interpretive skills of Aretha Franklin and Etta James.  She even has an occasional cute little quiver to her voice that’s reminiscent of Esther Phillips.  I’m not saying she sounds like any of the aforementioned, I’m just saying she is super talented like all of the aforementioned.  She can vocally caress a soulful ballad like nobody’s business and take full control of a hard hitting rocker that would make the late Janis Joplin stand and applaud.  She’s the REAL DEAL and my hope is that she ceases being a stranger to us North Americans below the Canadian border.  Our Black radio stations oughta’ be playin’ this woman’s incredible music.  If you can believe Reader Comments on the internet, she may even be underrated in the UK.  Hard to say but that’s hard to believe given her many music awards and nominations for awards.  I don’t talk much in this article because it’s designed to share wonderful live performances with you but just know that you will be doing yourself a disservice if you don’t listen to every single YOUTUBE video below of this extremely gifted Singer.  Let’s go CURRENTLY ONSTAGE with the irrepressible, irresistible Beverley Knight.  We’ll start off with a song she released on her 2011 album, Soul UK, which was a collection of cover songs from British artists who inspired her over the years.  Get ready to take a wind-swept journey because you’re about to be blown away by Beverley Knight’s tremendous interpretation of the George Michael song, “One More Try.”

posted by BeverleyKnightVideos

 
Beverley is one of those singers who won’t let you down when you see her in live performance.  You know the type; singers who punk out on their high notes they hit on their studio recordingsBeverley may even be better live because her energy comes on like gangbusters on stage.  This song is an example of what I’m talkin’ about.  Girlfriend holds nothing back on this live performance of her 2002 hit from her Who Am I album, this is Beverley Knight rockin’ out with “Get Up.”

posted by vocalskills

 
Beverley is very socially conscious and lends her name and deeds to many charities including HIV awareness in South Africa.  She’s quite recognized for her voluntary charitable work.  This fact makes me appreciate her that much more.  Also unleashed from the Who Am I album, this next song is probably her most recognized song; her anthem, if you will.  It’s the song that put her on the radar as a Star performer.  This is, “Shoulda Woulda Coulda.”

posted by QVCUK

 
This song is a re-interpretation of the Robbie Williams classic song.  In case you don’t know, Robbie Williams is a member of the British singing group, Take That.  Launching his solo singer career with the 1997 album, Life Thru A Lens, Robbie went on to become the biggest selling solo recording artist in Great Britain’s music historyRobbie’s original version of this song is phenomenal and the song is one of the best-written songs I’ve ever heard.  It’s said to be the song that Robbie closes his concerts with.  Beverley kills this song from Robbie Williams’ first solo album.  No wonder!  If this song doesn’t give you goose bumps, I just don’t know what will.  This song can be found on Beverley’s 2006 platinum-selling greatest hits collection entitled, Voice-The Best of Beverley Knight.  Check out her incredible rendition of, “Angels.”

posted by vocalskills

 
In 2001, a celebration was held in London to mark the 7th anniversary of South Africa’s freedom from the Apartheid political system which (mis)treated Black South Africans as American Blacks were (mis)treated during the pre-civil rights era of Jim Crow laws and policies; barely a notch above slavery.  Well, Beverley Knight was honored as one of the distinguished guest performers for this prestigious occasion.  The song she sang, shortly after meeting Nelson Mandela, was originally released in 1999 but fit perfectly for this historical moment.  This is Beverley on stage at the South African Freedom Day: Concert On The Square singing, “Greatest Day.”

posted by vocalskills

 
This clip shows off Beverley’s keyboard-playing and songwriting abilities.  Like I said, she’s the full package.  In 2009, she was invited by the wife of Britain’s Prime Minister to sing this song at the White Ribbon Alliance For Safe Motherhood charity.  If you listen to the lyrics of the song, it’s easy to see why First Lady Sarah Brown wanted her to sing this song at this event.  The song is a metaphor comparing Beverley (and all women) to Gold.  It’s a way we should all look at ourselves in relationships with others who may not value us as much as they should.  Check out the words as Beverley slams this beautiful song home to a French audience in Paris back in 2002.  This is, “Gold.”

posted by vocalskills

 
In 1967 Aretha’s sister, the late Erma Franklin, released the original R&B version of the Jerry Ragavoy and Bert Berns song, “Piece Of My Heart.”  One year later, Big Brother and the Holding Company covered the song and featured Janis Joplin on lead vocals to create a Rock & Roll classic.  For the doubters, those who may still question Beverley Knight’s ability to flat out own a song, check out her rendition of this absolute JAM, “Piece Of My Heart.”

posted by vocalskills

 
Beverley talks about her exciting experience of recording with Chaka Khan.  She expressed how thrilling it was to actually be in the studio working directly with Chaka as opposed to recording in separate studios at separate times, as is possible thanks to today’s technology.  Chaka was gracious enough and respected Beverley’s talents enough to appear as a guest singer on this song from her 2009 album entitled, 100%.  This is Beverley and her outstanding background vocalists in a live performance of, “Soul Survivor.”

posted by eviexbkfan

 
Beverley has recorded duets with Chaka Khan and Musiq Soulchild, been co-produced by Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis and Wyclef Jean.  She’s on the radar of our American musicians, singers and producers because the successful ones are global artists.  They could tell us about some incredibly talented performers from all parts of the world.  But we music lovers here at home are missing out on some great music because of the limited exposure our U.S. media offers international artists, which is an injustice to all of us.  But it’s up to us to seek out these tasty morsels of music that we miss out on… and don’t even get me started on the wonderful TV and film works from all continents that we should have easy access to.  Black British actor, Idris Elba starred in a limited TV series on the BBC TV network called, Luther… man!!!  If you saw it you know what I mean.  If you didn’t, look it up on Netflix; you’ll be glad you did.  So, NO SKIPS NO SCRATCHES will continue to open our borders to artists from elsewhere who deserved our patronage.  To see more Black British music artists who are also out of this world, check out the NO SKIPS NO SCRATCHES article in this volume entitled, JUST KICKIN’ IT-MORE BLACK BRIT STANDOUTS.  I’ll leave you with this high octane kicker by Beverley Knight.  This is, appropriately named, “Black Butta.”  Peace!

posted by nameinamillion

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