Eye of Samantha Productions LLC
Joan Watson-Jones Jazz Ensemble
Photo - Gary Alpert
Ingenues get the lion’s share of the attention, but jazz is an art form that rewards patience, and the most incisive performers draw on a deep well of experience…JOAN WATSON-JONES continues her evolution…creating music shaped by a fabulous family legacy.
Part of what makes Watson-Jones such an evocative performer is that she is a member of the band rather than a frontwoman. And what a band! FRANK WILKINS, a gifted pianist, arranger, and music director whose credits including backing Dee Dee Bridgewater is Watson-Jones’ hand-in-glove accompanist and longtime creative partner. The rhythm section tandem of DAVE ZOX and drummer ALVIN TERRY deliver consistently tasty and expertly calibrated propulsion. Watson-Jones gives her bandmates space to shine, but everyone’s working in the service of the songs, a string of musical pearls grown from hard-won wisdom and hard work on the bandstand. After discovering her voice as a singer, Watson-Jones reveals herself as a bard of the human condition, a journey that continues apace. Coming into your own as a jazz artist ‘takes a lifetime, because you’ve gotta find yourself before you can be yourself in the music,’ she says, a trenchant truism that could well turn up in a future Watson-Jones song.” – Andrew Gilbert – freelance writer, San Francisco Chronicle, Jazz Times KQEDArts, Berkeley