Following our interview with Kitty Durham from the sibling rockabilly trio Kitty, Daisy and Lewis, we saw the band in concert at The Bodega, where they played their latest album at the end of their UK tour.
The group, as expected, came onto the stage in an array of attires; the girls in colourful spandex one-pieces, and the boys in over-sized country suits. Their image fitted their attractive combination of sounds in their music, ranging from funk to jazz to pop. KDL kicked off the night with Lewis on the drums and the girls on piano and lead guitar – all in front of their parents, who were in control of rhythm guitar and double bass. It was quite the family set-up.
We saw an upbeat, excitable rendition of ‘The Feeling of Wonder’, with quick hi-hat action from Lewis accompanying the tight harmonies of Kitty and Daisy. The combination of funk riffs and cool piano scales set the mood for the evening – we were in for a light-hearted, major key ride. After versions of two or three other numbers from the album, ‘Kitty Daisy and Lewis The Third’, the siblings stood up and swapped around their instruments. Their shared ability to master drums, guitar and piano as well as vocals became evident, and made for an ever-intriguing evening. They performed ‘Baby Bye Bye’, one of their more successful singles from the release, with Lewis on the piano and vocals; another exciting song that combines a catchy melody on the piano with more depressing lyrics about the end of a relationship.
“Their shared ability to master drums, guitar and piano as well as vocals became evident, and made for an ever-intriguing evening”
With elements of old-school R&B and reggae in their music, KDL announced that they had a surprise guest for the audience; onto the stage came an elderly Jamaican trumpet-player, Eddie Thornton, who skipped to the mic, proclaiming ‘I love you!’ to the crowd. His riffs and melodies that followed complemented the music perfectly, adding that exciting treble-clef action that goes so well with jazz-related music. The elements of reggae involved provided a spectacular angle that coincided with the bands visual colour. His presence lasted for but a few instrumentals, before the band moved on to their remaining lyrical numbers.
We heard a rendition of ‘No Action’, a blunt complaint by Daisy about the lack of sexual endeavour in her bedroom. Their beautifully poetic yet jealous line “Who is she that that takes your compliments away from me?” was an example of KDL’s ability to not only musically engage the audience, but lyrically too – half rhymes, off-beats and improvisation made up a fantastic set.
The group tied off the evening with their ‘Going Up the Country’, a single released when they were still at school – a classic crowd-pleaser that then led into a long, somewhat repetitive guitar instrumental by Lewis. The old-school, improvising vibe became so evident at this point, and their musical influences shone through; a humble performance by a promising, talented band. Let’s hope their success in the UK emulates their USA achievements.
Read our interview with Kitty, Daisy and Lewis here
Image: Sarina Brady via Flickr
Co-Editor of the Music Section at University of Nottingham’s IMPACT Magazine.