WHAT PEOPLE SAY

Just Jazz (The National Traditional Jazz Magazine)

“The multimdeia presentation by Dave Merrick on the Origins of Jazz attracted an audience of more than sixty, with an encouraging number of young people. The recordings of New Orleans parade bands and others were used to illustrate the evening with Brendan Whitmore and Natalie Davis adding the live experience. Dave (Guitar) Natalie and Brendan had previously presented a Billie Holiday show at Bath's American Museum, which was a sell out with the demand for tickets exceeding the capacity by quite a margin. This is a welcome development to raise awareness to a new and younger audience of the music that has been so much of Just Jazz readers' lives especially as it is by musicians from the jazz world.”

Robert Coles, Just Jazz (The Traditional Jazz Magazine) (Aug 10, 2016)

South Bristol Voice

 

“More than a musical performance, Empress of the Blues; A Tribute to Bessie Smith seeks to recreate the magic weaved by the legendary 1920's singer. Combining spoken word, live music and film the event on April 6th tells the story of the first major black recording star who rose so high in the 1920's that she traveled in her own railway carriage. Natalie Davis takes on the challenging vocal role, accompanied by Brendan Whitmore on saxophone and Dave Merrick who narrates and plays guitar. Dave has organised similar tribute events to Woody Guthrie and Billie Holiday, including sell outs at the American Museum in Bath, as well as evenings at the Thunderbolt featuring the history of jazz and the roots of the classic blues. Natalie and Dave also appear as a duo featuring retro blues and jazz.”

Paul Breeden, South Bristol Voice (Mar 23, 2017)

Bright Sky Radio Florida

“Small Days are a jazz and Blues duo band from Bristol England. They are made up of Natalie Davis who provides us with beautiful cabaret style sultry vocals and Dave Merrick whose guitar influences are too numerous to mention but include the early blues fingerpicking guitarists such as Mississippi John Hurt and the Rev. Gary Davies . . . .”

Pat Stone, The Pat Stone Show - Bright Sky Radio (July 12, 2015

Bristol Post

“Small Days offer a fresh take on classic jazz and blues from the 1920s to the 1960s and beyond.”

Bristol Post, Bristol Post (Aug 29, 2017

Talk of Totterdown

When Ladies Sang the Blues. Blues and jazz duo Natalie Davis an Dave Merrick will be performing at Watershed celebrating the magic of classic women Blues singers through the twenties, thirties and beyond. The duo has performed in venues across Bristol and Bath,bringing jazz and Blues history to life through their special blend of music, multimedia and spoken word events. For many, the enduring image of the Blues singer is that of a single man playing a guitar, but the first commercial Blues singers to become household names were women. In the1920s, at the very beginning of the recording industry, Mamie Smith, Ma Rainey and Bessie Smith pioneered the way as majestic Blues singers. In her early teens, Billie Holiday heard these artists, often accompanied by Louis Armstrong, and she said of her own music that she wanted the power of Bessie Smith and the tone of Louis Armstrong. In this multimedia, live music and spoken word presentation, Natalie and Dave will bring to life this history.”

Carolyn Jones, TALK OF TOTTERDOWN (Sep 09, 2017)

 

 

Bristol TV

'Love it. We'd love to show this on Bristol TV on our regular segment showcasing great local videos from social media. Would you be happy to let us broadcast this with a credit to you?' Bristol TV (11 10 2018)

Bristol 24/7

 

“I met Dave on a drizzly Friday morning to have a tour around the Old Picture House. The place has a comfortable, yet alternative feel with chairs and sofas scattered throughout the room, and a bar in the corner. When I asked Dave about where all these beautiful pieces were from, he explained: “Kumar must have collected them over the years, different bits and pieces. He has quite a collection.” Dave went on to describe how the 1940s film Stormy Weather will be shown. “Stormy Weather is about African-American music, so obviously we’ll contextualise it a little and discuss the obvious race issues at the time. As you can imagine there were a lot of stereotypes then, which we’ll discuss before it begins” The movie will be introduced with a short set of vintage jazz and blues by 'Small Days' in which Dave plays guitar with his singing partner Natalie Davis. The pair have had sold out shows at Watershed Bristol, The American museum in Bath and Zion Community Arts Centre in Bristol”

Cat Everett, Bristol 24/7 (Oct 04, 2018)

South Bristol Voice

“Bessie’s life in blues brought back to life. Some performers deserve to be known by more than their work. Bessie Smith won fame as Empress of the Blues in the 1020’s, but there was more to her life than money and fame. She died in 1937, but 80 years on a good sized crowd were held rapt at the Thunderbolt as Dave Merrick narrated her life story, from a ragged upbringing in the American South, with the help of original recordings. Bessie shot to fame because her unique vocal style could cut through the limitations of 1920s recording technology. But it was the live performances the Totterdown audience were waiting for, and Natalie Davis on vocals, with Dave on guitar and Brendan Whitmore on saxophone did not disappoint. Renditions of I Need A Little Sugar in my Bowl, and ‘Taint Nobodies Business If I Do made the magic of Bessie shine, from the slow paced blues of the 1920s to the syncopated swing of the 1930. . the show had the audience rapt”

Paul Breeden, South Bristol Voice (May 01, 2017)

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