Friday, 20 November 2015

London Jazz Festival - Frank Holder

Event at a glance

PizzaExpress Jazz Club (10 Dean Street, London, W1D 3RW)

Date attended: 20, November 2015

Ticket Cost: Free (Sponsored by EFG)

Rating: ★★★★★(5/5)

My brief review: unbelievably fantastic, the oldest yet most spirited!


Frank Holder is probably the oldest yet most spirited jazz musician invited to  this London Jazz Festival, celebrating his 90th birthday year and his 70 years in the music business!

Born in Guyana in 1925, Frank Holder is known as a jazz singer and percussionist.
His instantly recognizable voice, prodigious scat singing and percussion skills have gain him a unique identity in jazz world. Highlights of his music career include an appearance at the prestigious Royal Albert Hall on the same bill as the jazz icon, Nat King Cole.

Frank Holder with his band

My favorite piece he performed in the jazz festival was “ day in day out”. He combined the introduction and the start of the singing smartly. “ The next one goes ‘ day in…’”. I thought he was just introducing the title, surprisingly he was singing already, with his “ Holderish” inimitable twist. The way he was so passionately into the singing and so briskly played the drum was absolutely misleading, as you probably was thinking aloud: Am I really listening to a 90 years old musician, or a possibly 30 years old energetic and enthusiastic lad? If he wasn’t right in front of my eyes, I would have never believed that this incredible performance was from a 90 years old jazz player!

Frank Holder with the pianist

When he finished the performance, I went up to congratulate him while he was sitting by a table next to mine. He even stood up and gave me a warm hug and kisses on cheeks. Again his amiable way of treating his fans probably explains another reason for his long lasting success in the jazz world!

Learn English in the context of Global Traveler's posts

spirited: [ ˈspɪrɪtɪd ] ADJ-GRADED. A spirited person is very active, lively, and confident. ()活泼的,生气勃勃的,自信的

Guyana: / ɡaiˈænə / Noun. a republic in northeastern South America; achieved independence from England in 1966.  圭亚那(拉丁美洲)

percussionist: [ pəˈkʌʃənɪst ] N-COUNT. A percussionist is a person who plays percussion instruments such as drums. 打击乐器演奏者

prodigious : [ prəˈdɪdʒəs ] adj. so great in size or force or extent as to elicit awe; 惊人的,奇异的
scat: [ skæt ] N-UNCOUNT. Scat is a type of jazz singing in which the singer sings sounds rather than complete words. (爵士乐中不唱歌词的)拟声唱法

on the same bill as sb.: 和某人同台演出

icon [ ˈaɪkɒn ] N-COUNT. If you describe something or someone as an icon, you mean that they are important as a symbol of a particular thing. 偶像;代表人物

inimitable: [ ɪˈnɪmɪtəbl ] ADJ. You use inimitable to describe someone, especially a performer, when you like or admire them because of their special qualities. 不能模仿的;无与伦比的

amiable: [ ˈeɪmiəbl ] ADJ-GRADED. Someone who is amiable is friendly and pleasant to be with. 和蔼可亲的;令人愉悦的


Collins Dictionary


  1. Dear Global Traveller, I am so pleased that you enjoyed Frank Holder's EFG London Jazz Festival Gig at The Soho Jazz Club in Dean Street. I am Frank's Agent and I have already arranged a Gig back at Dean Street to celebrate Frank's 91st Birthday at lunchtime on Sunday 10 April 2016. Tickets available at 0845 6027 017. Best Wishes, John

    1. Thank you for letting me know about it John. Please pass on my Christmas greetings to Frank.

      Merry Christmas!


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