"it is impossible not to be moved by this performer...with her lush, sultry & robust voice, Willson can get a rise out of a stone statue."
MSN music - all music guide
I first heard Michelle sing about twenty years ago in the parks of Boston, and was immediately smitten with her voice. Regrettably, I let her drop off my radar but was delighted to discover that she is still performing.
Michelle did not have all members of her usual band at this show, but I thought everyone was a terrific musician; they sounded as if they play together regularly. Mike Mele on guitar, Zac Casher on drums, Mark Earley on saxophones, and Marc Hickox on bass comprised the band.
Songs from Ruth Brown, Dinah Washington, Ella Fitzgerald, and Ray Charles were on the set list. Some of the songs allowed Michelle to belt out the words, while in others her voice was softly sensuous.
Evil Gal belting out the lyrics
Evil Gal in a more subtle moment
One of the things I most enjoy about Michelle’s performances is how much she loves performing. Her exuberance is infectious.
One cannot help but smile – and sing – along with Michelle.
Michelle is a force of nature; I would like to see her again (and again) in clubs that are more suited to her style. At a restaurant, people talk over her singing and there is general noise from the dinner service.
Michelle with Mike, Zac and Marc
Go see Michelle at a show and pick up a copy of ‘Fortune Cookie’; I don’t think you’ll regret it.
You can catch members of the band with Michelle as well as with other projects; Mark Earley, for instance, is a member of Roomful of Blues.
My only complaint is that my friend and I were told we had to vacate our table (for one in a back room) to accommodate a larger party coming in mid-way through the show. The restaurant knew we were there for the music and the request/demand was unacceptable. Because we complained, we were not relocated.
Otherwise, it was another night of wonderful music – it was the perfect way to cap off a holiday weekend!