Aspen, Colorado February 12, 2017
Laura Taylor, with Mark Johnson and Terry Banon
In a beautiful Episcopal sanctuary, Laura entered from off-stage with some beautiful arpeggios and began with the lovely It Might as well be Spring. Gorgeously dressed in black covered in glitter, she immediately entranced the audience and shared solos with Mark’s tenor saxophone and Terry’s creative piano, making us all waiting for the spring thaw.
Flowing directly into Peggy Lee’s Fever, the happy crowd realized her range of notes and style and the creative accents of the sidemen. The two openings songs were followed by an astonishingly fast version of I Remember You.
Laura then went to the Steinway and did her haunting bolero version of Where or When with a wonderful sax solo and very nice interplay between the three musicians. She next did her own successful composition, Think I’m in Love, which went Platinum with Diana Ross. Her creative and catchy Easy Street always brings wows. She picked out a friend to address with Johnny Mercer’s You Must Have Been a Beautiful Baby, to crowd applause. Her own special verse to Goody Goody and arrangement, gave schaudenfreude a new face and audience appeal.
Laura traded performances at the piano with Terry, showing her great versatility with the instrument, voice and arrangements. She also paid tribute to the several people who had organized and contributed to the event, with her sincere appreciation, both to them and to the many friends and admirers in the audience.
The two ballads The Nearness of You and My Funny Valentine brought sighs and fine applause, and her audience participation in her classic The Girl from Ipanema brought laughter and smiles. Her own written-for-a -movie Ain’t No Shortcut to Happiness was enthusiastically received and she closed with another Peggy Lee, I Love Being Here with You.
After great applause, she encored with her special version of her namesake, Laura, with an immediate and prolonged standing ovation. She complimented her accompanists and the crowd, and left the stage to great applause. It was a beautiful and brilliant concert, and assured her great admiration and appreciation of this sophisticated Aspen musical audience.
In the following reception, the compliments and astonishment of her talent were gushing, giving her such a new appreciation by both her close friends and those new to her performances, and she was buoyed by their enthusiasm.