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  • Volume Eight, Number Five: July 2003

    Hot and Cole Jazz

    Jim Lipkovits

    Holly ColeTurning it on, and turning it up. That’s what Canadian jazz great Holly Cole did at the Orpheum Theatre on a hot summer evening at the end of June. In the waning days of the Vancouver International Jazz Festival, Cole was booked as one of the highlights of the festival and she certainly lived up to the billing.

    A generous warm-up by Denzal Sinclair, a homegrown Capilano College alumnus left the stage ringing in preparation for Cole. Playing to the full house, Sinclair gave a flawless performance leaving the crowd waiting for more. 

    The fans, waiting for more, got just that--and more. Holly Cole not only took the stage; she kept it for the whole rest of the evening. Cole was, as is said in traditional jazz circles, “cool ‘cuz cool is always good to start with,” but after a few slightly austere (at least for her) offerings, she had her four-piece boys in the band turn up the heat.

    That’s when the Orpheum’s cooling system just couldn’t keep up to Cole’s sizzling performance, but that’s cool too. Drawing on material recorded in her thirty some-odd years in the business, she reshaped standards, turning them up to cooking levels.

    Holly Cole absolutely filled the evening past overflowing, transfixing the crowd with her energy and mastery of her jazz and her world.  For those who missed her, you can always hope that maybe she’ll come back another time.

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