Headlining the Blue Angel stage on Sunday night this American bohemian, once discovered busking on the streets of Paris, has a voice likened to the late great Billy Holiday. With self penned soul searching lyrics delivered in husky tones of a jazz/folk style, the lady who left us with "Careless Love" five years ago, returns with two more albums under her belt and stronger than ever.
WOWfest has the greatest reggae line up of this season and how appropriate that there is also a stage, at this brightest new festival, to revive the mood of the British modern Jazz era of 1950s London clubs, around Carnaby Street, growing at the same time as sounds from the Caribbean were integrating into UK musical culture around the same haunts as jazzfather Johnny Dankworth.
The WOWfest Blue Angel Stage revives the spirit of the great island jazz festivals, but with an extra pinch of WOW. During the day escape into the eclectic world that is jazz – from '40s swing to bebop and modern fusions, plus the most unexpected – to night time burlesque and comedic cabaret with all the ingredients of turn of the century France or pre-war Berlin. In Das Kabaret see one of the most respected and admired performers in the world of burlesque, LouLou D’vil, along with the King of Comedy Magic, Christian Leeand legendary street performer, Chris Lynam, among others to whip up a froth of expectation and laughter.
The Blue Angel stage boasts enigmatic renditions from the UK's hottest vocal harmony group, The Overtones, with songs from their platinum selling album 'Good Ol' Fashioned Love'. Influenced by classics artists like Amy Winehouse, Duffy and the Drifters, their unique doo-wop vocal harmonies will be sure to keep audiences spellbound.
Gregg Kofi Brown makes a first time appearance on the festival isle. Gregg has been a member of the world class African pioneers OSIBISA for over 22 years and has travelled all over the world promoting the music of Ghana. His music is an addictive fusion of funky afro-rhythms, jazz and conscience-laden lyrics.
And anticipated to be making a return to the Isle of Wight is DJ Perry Louis & his JazzCotech Dancers or “Red Box Perry” and “those brilliant dancers” as they became affectionately known at IW Jazz Festivals. They’ll be occupying the Blue Angel during the weekend with their own style of Old Skool Jazz, Street Dance and DJ Perry's enviable collection of over 10,000 vinyls covering all those great genres that have their musical roots in Africa.
Performing on the Blue Angel stage is London born singer, writer and multi-instrumentalist Joe Cang who has toured, recorded and written with Ian Drury, Scritti Politti, K.T. Tunstall, Desmond Dekker, Hall and Oates, Marianne Faithfull, Hugh Masakela, Leona Lewis and Aswad – with whom he wrote the million seller hit “Shine”. Joe's band includes some of the cream of London's musicians and they are currently playing throughout Europe their unique blend of new classic jazz with a strong hint of blues.
From Ronnie Scotts to Milan and finally to the Isle of Wight’s WOWfest, ex Communard Sarah Jane Morris is one artist that really lets you “Leave your preconceptions at home,” as one London critic said of the sensual singer-songwriter. Sarah straddles rock, blues, jazz and soul with a goosebump-raising four octave range that rumbles from the heels of her size eight shoes to the tips of her flame-red mane. Famed for her association with the Communards in the mid-80s, Sarah has always attracted as much attention for her politics as for her soul-driven, seismic voice.
Other artists gracing the Blue Angel are distinctive Dominican jazz guitarist Cameron Pierre, the Shez Raja Collective, the London Gospel Community Choir, award winning Dennis Rollins – the most exciting British trombonist of our times – and Dixie chicksLarkin Poe, the precociously talented young women who recently took America by storm.