THE UNIQUE SOUND OF ZOE FRANCIS
NOW ON HER CURRENT PROJECT
CATCH ZOE PERFORM TRACKS FROM THE BLUE TOWN PROJECT LIVE
10th NOVEMBER 2019 AT PIZZA EXPRESS JAZZ CLUB (SOHO) - A SUNDAY LUNCH TIME EVENT
DOORS OPEN MIDDAY - SHOW TIME 1:30PM
'Blue Town' project is a selection of some of the greatest bittersweet songs of the last century. Lyrics which capture our moods, whether daydreaming or reminiscing, hopeful or heartbroken. With two stellar musicians Jim Mullen ( A legend to guitar players around the world) and Ross Stanley (probably the most in-demand sideman on the British scene) they bring layers of harmonic colour to the pleasing melancholy in these stories, composers including Billy Strayhorn, Ennio Morricone, Lionel Bart and Fran Landesman.
NEW GIGS FOR 2019
30th OCTOBER 2019 - JAZZ at THE IVY ROOM, IVY HOUSE, IVY LANE (Off Downing St.), FARNHAM GU9 7PT
Zoe will be performing a lovely selection of melodic standards plus a selection of songs from her lauded CD "REMEMBERING Blossom Dearie" in a show hosted by Sandra Lambert/Piano with Jim Mullen/Guitar, Mick Hutton/Bass & Jeff Lardner/Drums
5th DECEMBER 2019 - PIZZA EXPRESS JAZZ CLUB, MAIDSTONE
32 EARL ST., MAIDSTONE ME14 1PF
Zoe performs tracks from her acclaimed CD "REMEMBERING Blossom Dearie" with Jim Mullen/Guitar, Graham Harvey/Piano & Mick Hutton/Bass
7th DECEMBER 2019 - BULL'S HEAD, BARNES SW19 9PY
Zoe's new project, "DECLARATION OF LOVE" featuring Jim Mullen/Guitar, Graham Harvey/Piano & Mick Hutton/Bass plus a special guest to be announced
22nd MAY 2019 - SWANSEA JAZZLAND CLUB, SWANSEA SA2 0NP
Zoe performs tracks from her current album, "REMEMBERING Blossom Dearie" featuring Jim Mullen/Guitar; Barry Green/Piano &
26th MAY 2019 - ELECTRIC THEATRE, GUILDFORD GU1 4SZ
Zoe performs tracks from her brand new album "BLUE TOWN" featuring Jim Mullen/Guitar & Ross Stanley/Organ
2nd JUNE 2019 - ISLE of WHITE JAZZ FESTIVAL - APOLLO THEATRE
14:30 - 16:15 Zoe performs tracks from her brand new album "BLUE TOWN" featuring Jim Mullen/Guitar & Ross Stanley/Organ
2nd JUNE 2019 - 606 CLUB, CHELSEA SW10 0QD
CD Launch GIG for "BLUE TOWN", Zoe's brand new album featuring Jim Mullen/Guitar & Ross Stanley/Organ
3rd JUNE 2019 - THE WHITE HORSE JAZZ NIGHT, BEDFORD
Zoe performs on a session hosted by drummer Mark Hale featuring Jim Mullen/Guitar and Ross Stanley/Hammond Organ
19th JUNE 2019 - ASHBURTON ARTS CENTRE, ASHBURTON TQ13 7DT
Zoe performs tracks from her recent CDs including her latest CD "BLUE TOWN".
Zoe will be accompanied by the great Jim Mullen on guitar and Neil Burns also on guitar.
17th AUGUST 2019 - VORTEX JAZZ CLUB, 11 GILLET SQ., DALSTON N16 8AZ
Zoe Francis presents tracks her latest CD "BLUE TOWN" featuring Jim Mullen/Guitar & Ross Stanley/Hammond Organ
12th SEPTEMBER 2019 - BECKENHAM JAZZ CLUB, Langley Park Social Club
2 HAWKSBROOK LANE, BR3 3SR
Zoe/Vocals with Jim Mullen/Guitar, Graham Harvey/Piano & Mick Hutton/Bass
17th SEPTEMBER 2019 - BRENTWOOD JAZZ CLUB, Bardswell Social Club
Weald Road, CM14 4TJ
Zoe/Vocals with Jim Mullen/Guitar, Graham Harvey/Piano & Mick Hutton/Bass
28th SEPTEMBER 2019 - WOOBURN FESTIVAL, CURZON CENTRE, BEACONSFIELD HP9 1RG
Zoe performs with the Zoe Francis/Jim Mullen Quintet featuring Gareth Williams/Piano with Mick Hutton/Bass & Tristan Malliot/Drums
A Musical Journey
London-born Zoe Francis grew up in Northern Ireland in an artistic environment, her father John and grandfather Colin Middleton MBE were celebrated artists and encouraged a lifelong love of art.
When her parents separated she moved to Lincolnshire with her mum and sister. Zoe fell in love with dancing through films starring Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, Gene Kelly and Cyd Charisse and in her teenage years she toured with a contemporary dance company and acted in a local theatre group.
On a visit to New York while learning Tango and going to Jazz clubs, a musician introduced her to the vocal workshops of pianist Barry Harris. This was a turning point for Zoe. She discovered her love of great songs and lyrics and was encouraged to pursue singing. Alongside the weekly workshops Zoe began singing in the many jam sessions held around Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Harlem. This led to her performing in local clubs with musicians of the calibre of Harry Allen, Joe Cohn, Warren Vache, and Chris Flory.
Although she loved her time in New York, a homesick Zoe returned to the UK and moved to Bristol where she began performing with award-winning pianist David Newton. In 2013 she recorded her first album “Looking For a Boy” with David Newton.
A move to London gave Zoe the opportunity to work with top players like Gareth Williams, Stan Sulzmann, and Jim Mullen, producing a live album at London’s 606 jazz club in 2014 which led to her performing with this band including Mick Hutton and Enzo Zirilli in and around the London area.
Zoe’s album “Remembering Blossom Dearie” 2018 celebrates the reportoire of the singer/pianist Blossom Dearie with Jim Mullen, Barry Green and Mick Hutton.
Zoe's new album, blue town, is a selection of bittersweet songs the lyrics of which capture our moods whether we are reminiscing or daydreaming, hopeful or heartbroken and features multi-award winning guitarist Jim Mullen and the incomparable Ross Stanley on Hammond organ.
REVIEWS OF ZOE'S PREVIOUS CD RELEASES AND LIVE PERFORMANCES
JAZZ VIEWS JULY 2019 - CD REVIEW -"BLUE TOWN"
This is an absolutely stunning album from Zoe Francis, and in the best possible sense the perfect recording to sit down with your favourite drink and just let the sweet sound of Zoe, Ross Stanley and Jim Mullen wash over you. Having said that, there is nothing lightweight about this set, just some superb songs impeccably interpreted and played at just the right tempos.
LONDON JAZZ NEWS - 22ND JUNE 2019 - CD REVIEW - "BLUE TOWN"
With Blue Town, her fourth album,…….with just two stellar musicians, guitarist Jim Mullen, a legend to guitar players around the world, and organist Ross Stanley…… With no drums or conventional electric or acoustic bass on which to centre the time this is quite a challenge but Mullen’s restrained comping combined with Stanley’s varied dynamics ……… are just what Francis’s voice needs.
The voice; ah yes…….. Above all .for me, she is just fantastically cool……. Another of Zoe’s qualities is her choice of material, from a road less travelled in the American Song Book – or even outside it.
LONDON JAZZ NEWS - LIVE AT LAUDERDALE HOUSE - MAY 17TH 2018
"A lovely, delightfully subtle evening....." Brain Blain
LONDON JAZZ NEWS - CD REVIEW MARCH 2018 - "REMEMBERING BLOSSOM DEARIE"
".....If you like the music of Blossom Dearie you will enjoy this album. If you are new to her work this fresh take will serve as an excellent introduction both to her and to lovely Zoe Francis......" - Jane Mann
LIVE AT CRAZY COQS - FEBRUARY 21ST 2018
"Because taste is her(Zoe's)middle name the evening reeked class and style.........Do yourself a favour, get hold of a copy and wallow in top-of-the-line entertainment"
Leon Nock - jazz journal - February 2018
SANDY BROWN JAZZ - CD REVIEW FEBRUARY 2018 - "REMEMBERING BLOSSOM DEARIE"
"There is certainly no ambiguity about the singing style of of Zoe Francis, her first two albums Looking For A Boy and The Very Thought Of You have received much favourable reaction, Dave Gelly said "She communicates a love and understanding of classic American song with the lightest of touches". This light touch is perhaps reminiscent of Blossom Dearie but whereas Blossom did not quite get to grips with all the songs on the Comden and Green album Zoe Francis has the power and depth in her voice to do these songs justice." - Howard Lawes
LIVE AT PIZZA EXPRESS - MAY 19TH 2015 - REVIEW
“Several months having passed since hearing the debut show of singer Zoe Francis” so “it was with some sense of anticipation that I made my way to Dean Street's Pizza Express on Tuesday last.”……. “Immediately one could not help noticing an increased authority, and yet - and it is an important part of her appeal - she retains an almost diffident charm and a vocal quality” …..
Brian Blain – London Jazz News – May 2015
JAZZ VIEWS JANUARY 2015 - ZOE'S CD "LOOKING FOR A BOY" REVIEWED
……There is no doubt that Zoe Francis is a singer to watch out for in the future and her choice of musicians is impeccable. Stan Sulzmann’s contribution on tenor saxophone are particularly outstanding and pianist Gareth Williams has also plenty of fine playing on the album…….An absorbing release and one I would not hesitate to recommend to lovers of quality singers.
Reviewed by Roy Booth
GUARDIAN 22ND DECEMBER 2013 - ZOE'S CD "LOOKING FOR A BOY" REVIEWED.
(ZFR) Zoe Francis is a singer to listen out for. She communicates a love and understanding of classic American song with the lightest of touches. It sounds easy and casual until you notice how deftly each turn of phrase falls in just the right place, both rhythmically and to chime with the meaning of the words. Her choice of not-quite-forgotten songs (Down With Love, I Wish I Knew, etc) is canny, too. With the A-team accompaniment of pianist David Newton, guitarist Colin Oxley and bassist Andrew Cleyndert generating just the right kind of gentle but irresistible swing, it’s a classy set. Dave Gelly
1. I Was Doing Alright / George & Ira Gershwin
2. I Had The Craziest Dream / Harry Warren & Mack Gordon
3. Looking For A Boy / George & Ira Gershwin
4. Down With Love / Harold Arlen & E Y Harburg
5. Remind Me / Jerome Kern & Dorothy Fields
6. I Wish I Knew / Harry Warren & Mack Gordon
7. What Will I Tell My Heart / Jack Lawrence, Peter Tinturin & Irving Gordon
8. Social Call / Gigi Gryce & Jon Hendricks
9. Dindi / Antonio Carlos Jobim
10. Why Try To Change Me Now / Cy Coleman & Joseph McCarthy
11. Young At Heart / Johnny Richards & Carolyn Leigh
12. It Only Happens When I Dance With You / Irving Berlin & Frank Sinatra
Personnel all tracks: Zoe Francis/Vocals; David Newton/Piano; Colin Oxley/Guitar & Andrew Cleyndert/Bass
Want to learn more about Zoe, her music, and her tour dates? Don’t hesitate to get in touch.
PAST EVENTS 2019
This is what you missed!