Bay area singer Nicolas Bearde and his quartet held a CD release party and played at Oakland’s Sound Room Saturday night, March 26. The CD was Invitation. See the track list here. Nicolas has more than half a dozen releases out. After the show, audience members were heard to say, “Wasn’t that a great concert.” and “Wasn’t this just terrific.”
Veteran performer Nic is from Tennessee After some world travels he landed in the SF scene in the 80’s. He now plays nation-wide. His “California” quartet included John Shifflett on bass, Leon Joyce Jr on drums, Charles McNeal on sax, and a notable piano player Glen Pearson. (Nic explained he has another band in New York, when he plays in eastern US.)
The Sound Room regularly plays music shows and is run by husband & wife team Karen Van Leuven and Robert Bradsby, from New York & Texas respectively. They are now bay area people and have had the Room open some 3 years. They started out giving house concerts. Things started getting bigger, and then bigger. Finally they said, “let’s open our own place !” The Room is on the north side of downtown, on Broadway right near W Grand Av. This place serves hors-d’oeuvres, light food and drinks but isn’t about decor or frills; it’s all about the music.
Nicolas sang from his new CD and gave a night of classics with some oldies. Example songs were Come Back To Me (by Nic B), Dindi (English version, by Frank Sinatra), My One & Only Love (Louis Armstrong), Nature Boy (Nat King Cole & Eden Ahbey), and I Want To Talk About You (Billy Eckstine). For other samples of Bearde see Never Let Me Go and Wild Is The Wind. Be advised, when Nic’s bay area man Charles on sax plays, there will be no shortage of runs.
Check here for the Sound Room calendar and tickets, for their great shows coming up.