R.I.P. Whitney Houston

A quick glance at Twittter this morning alerted The Kaje to the passing of the one and only Whitney Houston. While many reports are referring to her troubled existence, here at The Kaje we feel it is far more appropriate to celebrate the versatile talent that lit up both the stage and screen with an irrepressible presence. Whatever Whitney did she shone, she stole hearts and connected with the emotion of the situation. Whether she was to make you laugh or cry, she did it with grace and tenderness. Few talents have ever existed like the legend that is Whitney Houston, and a shining star has been stolen from the sky on this very sad day. We say leave the troubles behind, lets remember the legacy.

THEATRE REVIEW: Brendan Cole – Live and Unjudged, New Alexandra Theatre (Birmingham), 23.01.12

Brendan Cole, the bad boy star of Strictly Come Dancing quickstepped his way to Birmingham last night for a show stopping tour of Latin, ballroom and all that jazz.

He was a true show man throughout the performance, moving over the stage as if he was walking on air and entertaining the very appreciative crowd throughout.

This show is not just for dance lovers but a showstopper for all ages, with a 14 piece band that will
captivate you with their song renditions with well-known numbers from Michael Jackson, Whitney
Houston, Robert Palmer, Jennifer Lopez, Prince, Frank Sinatra to name a few.

Performing not only Strictly favourites but also with his brother Scott Cole, who did not hold back
at offering an insight into the real Brendan Cole, as did the main man himself! Engaging wonderfully
with the audience and getting everybody up to dance and stirred the crowd into an excited frenzy.

Truly a wonderfully, happy and fun night!

Rating: 5/5
Reviewer: Eleni Kypridemos 

The Kaje talks December Sessions to Kelly Rowland

Kelly Rowland is no longer only known as one third of Destiny’s Child. While early solo success included the irrepressible Nelly duet “Dilemma” and the tender “Stole”, Rowland was for a long time the victim of her earlier success. However, rather than run away from the critics, Rowland stayed her ground and ensured that with each release her material stood the test. With her judging role on X Factor and numerous David Guetta collaborations having served only to raise her profile, Rowland has unleashed her finest work to date in the shape of “Here I Am”. With Rowland ready to right the wrongs, she talks openly to The Kaje about her early days…

Can you tell us about the one moment that gave you a big break in your career?

It was firstly meeting Whitney and secondly performing on the Grammy’s for the first time. You feel like you’ve really arrived in that moment because you’re performing in front of your peers and these are the people that actually vote for you to get a Grammy Award. I respect the Grammy’s so much.

Was performing live important for you when you were trying to get a name for yourself?

Absolutely. I just remember coming up with Destiny’s Child and we would watch video tapes of Michael Jackson, Janet Jackson, The Jackson 5 and the Supremes and look at how they were having fun above anything but how they just commanded the audience and you have to embrace that as a performer and constantly work on that as well.  It’s pretty hard to go out there and do your first live performance. I mean you’re performing in front of so many people but it’s also important to have fun. You have to have fun.

People are saying right now that we need to nurture new talent more than ever because of record companies wanting to take less of a punt on new acts due to reduced budgets – would you agree and if so why do you think new talent is so important?

I think there are new ways to invest in new talent. I’m investing in myself. There used to be a time when record labels would shoot so many different video’s and have more of a budget but it is all stripped down now. But when you believe in something you put money behind it.

What advice would you give to up an up and coming act trying to break through right now?
Definitely self promote, find places to perform and get out there. Perform everywhere. And YouTube – I constantly go on to YouTube to find new things and ideas, it’s such a great inspiration.


SINGLE REVIEW: Tara Mathew “He Said, She Said”

Release Date: 30th August 2010

At the age of only 15, Tara Mathew was selected to sing at the opening ceremony of the 1997 Canada Games. With credentials like that you know instantly that Tara has “the voice.”

Tara lists her influences as the great Bette Midler, Ella Fitzgerald, Mariah Carey, Whitney Houston, and Lauryn Hill to name a few, and it is certainly easy to hear hints of all of the above in her soulful voice.

“She Said, He Said” is a fun, pop and r ‘n’ b influenced track. The upbeat track captures  a sound that is popular in both continents.  A catchy chorus will have you singing along, as Tara warns us that “the tongue is like a razor blade”. The sound may not be original but Tara sits well in the pop and r ‘n’ b niche, and it’s hard to find fault with her vocal talents.

The album follows in the autumn, which is sure to have a collection of equally catchy tracks, written by yet another talented singer/songwriter. If you like Mariah and Leona, go out a buy a copy. If you don’t, then this is not the record for you!

Rating:  3/5

Kim Harrell

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