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Wednesday, August 25, 2010

AN EVENING WITH KEVIN MATHEWS


As much pleasure as I take from performing before an appreciative crowd, nothing quite beats the satisfaction of seeing someone else succeed and knowing that you've played some part in that achievement. As some of you may be aware, I've been working with young singer-songwriter Debra Khng since February and last night, Debra made her debut at the Esplanade Concourse (and her second solo performance overall) as she opened each of my two sets with her own originals.

The first, a country ballad entitled Strangers, Debra first introduced at the OOOM in June and many who saw her were surprised that that was her first solo performance. The second, a topical song called The Prince is even better, in my view, and has tremendous potential. We'd spent the last few weeks practicing these songs and Debra has been diligent in honing the tunes and her vocal performance so that she would be entirely comfortable with the final result.

Two bizarre incidents to report - after the soundcheck a group of young Korean girls asked to be photographed with me and after the first set, a Polish lady gave Debra a kiss in appreciation of her performance! Amazing, eh? Even though the crowd could not match the numbers at Baybeats (how could it?), it didn't matter to either of us.  For me, personally, I was glad to perform quite a few new songs (e.g. Silver, Little Red Dot, Liars in Love, If I Wasn't Paranoid I'd Be Dead) and it feels good that I'm continuing to move forward with my music making, whatever the circumstances might be.

I want to thank Ivan, Aloysius, Benjamin, Deb's sisters/friends, Desmond (who I spied in the corner of my eye) and to Ivanified for the great pix. Of course, to Delvin, Ann and the rest of the Esplanade staff for sterling support as always. Last but not least, to Debra for lighting up the stage. 

... still there's more ...