You know when you’re a teenager, and you see one of your school teachers out at the shops with their families/friends/each other (god forbid), and you have that feeling of the whole world being a bit off-kilter? Like the whole equilibrium of life is a bit outta whack? “WHAT? Teachers have lives?!” you (probably) exclaimed, as all your illusions of teacherly boringness start to crack. Well, imagine seeing your ex-music teachers performing in the Cabaret Festival, all sassy-like, in the same room that held your school formals. I know.
Luckily, I had the kind of music teachers that were just as sassy at school too, and who I knew could belt out a tune or fifty. Together, three of these jazz-loving lasses have formed an ace little group called The Boswell Project, which honours the largely unknown work of the pioneering Boswell Sisters. They’re backed up by a band of local jazz-loving lads too, including *fun fact alert* my old saxophone teacher^. The original Boswells were mates with Duke Ellington, inspired the likes of Ella Fitzgerald and The Andrews Sisters, and were incredibly talented multi-instrumentalists, yet they just aren’t given the credit they deserve these days. The Boswell Project aim to change this, to tell the amazing story of the soulful Boswell sisters and bring their glorious harmonies to audiences near and far.
I was lucky enough to be part of one of their audiences last night at the Adelaide Cabaret Festival, as I was writing a review of the show for On Dit (you can read what I wrote here). The cheeky jokes shared amongst the women and their band, along with the enlightening insight they gave into the lives and times of ‘The Bozzies’ and their involvement in the New Orleans and New York jazz scenes, made for a super fun show. Short, sharp and shiny at just over an hour long, I was left hoping for a juuuust a lil more – a sign of a job well done by The Boswell Project team.
Unfortunately, there’s only one more show as part of the Adelaide Cabaret Festival for The Boswell Project, but if you keep an eye on their website or Facebook page, you might just be able to catch a future performance. The website also has little clips of the ladies doin’ their thang, if you want a taster. Also, they’ve just been asked to go to New Orleans to perform at an exhibition about the Boswell sisters, which is kind of a big deal. You can help them make it there by donating to their Pozible project, right over here. As I (am pretty sure I) mentioned over in my post about Elli Belle (who, coincidentally, I also met at high school), supporting local lovelies is lovely, so get behind The Boswell Project and help them tell this amazing story.
^Devastatingly, my hopes of being a pro sax player were dashed with the news that I was to become the not-so-proud wearer of a set of clunky orthodontic braces. However, I still adore that soulful instrument and maintain that most songs could be vastly improved with a good brass solo.