Simone Felice, Jumpin’ Hot Club, Cluny 2, Newcastle
2:07pm Wednesday 1st September 2010
NEW York State act Simone Felice (of the Felice Brothers and The Duke And The King fame) was back in town after overcoming, not for the first time in his life, major surgery.
Felice is not only a wonderful storyteller, but his charismatic stage presence is also as strong as anyone on the Americana scene. After his recent problem, Felice plays each and every show as if it could be his last.
His love of drama, plied with a genuine humbleness serves him well and he left many of the audience star-struck with his performance.
He worked the emotions of us all as he spoke of his recent death-defying experience, baring his chest to show a huge surgical scar and tell of his childhood in the Catskills.
The likes of Don’t Wake The Scarecrow and One More American Song and, a big favourite with his fans, Your Belly In My Arms, helped shape as committed and intimate performance as you could wish for.
On reaching out to the audience for vocal support (his Detroit soul singers), he wove a tapestry of emotions and imagery akin to Neil Young at his best, and that says it all.
Little wonder his show received not one but two encores.