Live Music

ANY music fan from the 1980s will remember Mari Wilson’s beehive hairdo, as well as her vocal skill.

When the single Just What I Always Wanted propelled her into the Top 10, her reputation as the Neasden Queen of Soul seemed assured and Mari and her backing band The Wilsations were a fixture on TV and radio.

Pop and Soul singer Mari Wilson says her style has morphed to a more Jazz based sound as she goes on tour with new band the New Wilsations

Since those days, she has gradually morphed towards a jazzier sound and is still writing and recording at the age of 64.

Her latest album, Pop Deluxe, was recorded with Alistair Gavin. “I’ve been touring that for three-and-a-half years now,” she says. “I was singing some Dusty Springfield songs and, as they’re mainly ballads, I found myself wanting to perform my own interpretation of them.

“It was from this that led me to doing shows featuring some of my other, favourite, female artists like Dusty, and Sandie Shaw, and Cilla Black.” says Mari.

Along with other songs from her extensive back catalogue Mari is now back on tour with her current band, the New Wilsations, promising an energetic live show.

“It’s a great show,” she says. “I’ll be telling some really good stories and, if you’ve not been and seen me before, I’m often told that people are surprised by my vocals – so just come along and have yourselves a good old sing-a-long.”

Mari Wilson plays at the Electric Theatre in Guildford, tomorrow night (Friday 1 November).

For the full story get the 31 October edition of the News & Mail

LOCAL, national and touring US acts are heading to Woking this month for the Surrey Americana Festival.

IN THE GROOVE – The Mantic Muddlers are among the attractions at the Americana Festival

About 20 acts have been lined up for the event, which will take place at the Fiery Bird on Saturday and Sunday 21 and 22 September.

Among those confirmed are the Mantic Muddlers, Katie Bradley, Dustbowl Sinners, the Will Purdue Band, Phil Coleman, J Lee & The Hoodoo Skulls and Downtown Roundabout.

For tickets details and further information, please visit www.fierybirdvenue.org.uk.

For more details about acts appearing at the festival, see the 19 September edition of the News & Mail