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L A Salami - Servant Jazz Quarters, London, 11/7/2016

  by Dastardly

published: 23 / 8 / 2016

L A Salami - Servant Jazz Quarters,  London,  11/7/2016


Dastardly opens the Sunday papers, reads an article about L A Salami then next day finds himself face to face with the talented South-East London troubadour in the Servant Jazz Quarters

“And we’re alive right now.. which is pretty amazing if you think about it.” I’m not sure if that’s exactly what L A Salami said at one point in between songs but it was words to that effect anyway. Sometimes it’s good to put a stick through the spokes and get up close to this being alive thing and give it a sniff...plus I’m trying to think of someone else who’s said this during a gig and not sounded like a total Dustin. So fair play to the young singer-songwriter from Peckham via Broadstairs who’s making waves in 'The Sunday Times' music section currently and looks set for a wider audience come August and the release of new album ‘Dancing with Bad Grammar’. A few years back I was fortunate to share a stage with L A at the 12 Bar club (R.I.P). At the end we swapped CDs and I’ve got a feeling I might have come off slightly better in this exchange. Either way I remember thinking at the time that there was something special about this performer and his way with words. Hence why a chance encounter with him in the weekend broadsheets has led me to the Servant Jazz Quarters in Dalston tonight to get another look. He’s a stylish individual, for sure. There’s something Jimi Hendrix and Bob Dylan about him. Perhaps it’s just the congas on stage that are giving me the Woodstocks but it’s also in his self-assuredness and natty suit. As for the words...“She really made a fool out of me but it’s the fool in me that wants her back” is an early highlight and thankfully memorable as it’s just that little bit too squashed in here to get the magic pencil out for a quick written note. It’s L A’s ability, however, for the rambling lyric that really draws you in. On songs like ‘My Thoughts They Too Will Tire’ he displays a Dylanesque ability to weave and spin and juggle right in front of your eyes like these are thoughts coming out rather than a pre-prepared script. Nice. Although the subject matter is not always easy to swallow. One song in particular ‘Loosely on My Mind’ told from the eyes a knife carrying er, murderer is a bumpy ride through the city streets. Elsewhere elusive lovers and trying to survive in the capital (without killing people) is a recurring theme as is an ability to talk about current issues without preaching. Accordingly Jeremy Corbyn gets a nod and this namecheck alone reminds you how much has changed in the last few weeks. We as a nation might be out but politics is definitely back in. L A was solo acoustic back at the 12 Bar but now he’s accompanied by a backing band who ably frame the songs for about half the set tonight. Either way he looks ready and looking round the small but rapt young crowd tonight I’m wondering if this an artist starting the conversation with their audience. It looks like it might be quite a lengthy chat.

Also at Servant Jazz Quarters, London

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Dancing With Bad Grammar (2016)
Explosive and angry long-awaited debut album from London-based singer-songwriter and musician L A Salami

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