Anita Wardell’s singing is breathtaking. She is noted for her mesmerising vocal improvisations and vocalese lyrics to instrumental solos. Anita is a musician who uses the voice as her instrument, displaying precision and agility, mixed with heartfelt emotion.
Kinda Blue, her second and most recent album for Proper Records UK, shows Anita’s versatility and complete command of her instrument. On this recording, she has teamed up with some of the UK’s finest musicians: Robin Aspland (piano), Jeremy Brown (bass) and Steve Brown (drums), with special guest performances by Adam Glasser on harmonica and Phil Robson on guitar. This carefully selected set of songs gives you an insight to the infectious and spellbinding performances heard live.
Anita received the prestigious BBC Jazz Award for Best of Jazz category in 2006. This, coupled with the release of Kinda Blue, are now propelling Anita into the major artist arena.
Noted, her first release for the new label (released in July 2006), is a collaboration of well known material from the Blue Note era to which Anita has penned many of her own lyrics. It received much radio play and 4 and 5 star reviews from UK and European jazz publications.
Singer Norma Winstone praised her “unexpected vulnerability, which makes her reading of the ballads both beautiful and touching. Her honesty shines in this well-chosen selection of songs.”
Bebop pioneer, Mark Murphy, proclaimed Anita, “a gift from Australia”, adding, “What hits me, is how expressive her ballad singing is. Then she has the courage to scat a ballad or two, not unlike a young lady disciple of the Ben Webster school.”