November 2014 saw the unveiling of her “Pannonica” project. Performing lyrical interpretations of compositions penned by the legendary pianist, Thelonious Monk. Originally inspired by the 1988 Carmen McRae album “Carmen Sings Monk” UK jazz vocalist Zoe Gilby’s new project features some of the North East’s most talented instrumentalists and primarily draws on the work of one of her musical heroines, American singer Carmen McRae, who recorded memorable interpretations of Thelonious Monk’s music in the 1960’s (including some of his best known tunes such as ‘Blue Monk’, and ‘Pannonica’ (written in honour of the Jazz Baroness, the muse of bebop).
Playing alongside Zoe in Pannonica are Paul Edis – Piano, Andy Champion – Double Bass and Adrian Tilbrook – Drums. Here is a review from “Bebop Spoken Here” of the band’s first performance. Pannonica made their debut performance at Splinter Jazz at The Bridge in Newcastle in November 2014, and followed up with a gig at the prestigious Gateshead International Jazz Festival at The Sage in Gateshead.
“This was some occasion! A sparkling, luminescent Zoe Gilby presented Pannonica, a personal response to Carmen McRae’s “Carmen Sings Monk” album. Ms Gilby delighted a full house with expressive singing and many insights into the making of McRae’s late-career recording and the lives of the bop era musicians associated with Thelonious Monk and their loyal patron ‘Pannonica.’”
“All four musicians at the Bridge Hotel excelled on a magical evening.”
Zoe will be expanding the repertoire of “Pannonica” by adding several interpretations of other jazz artists in the near future.
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