Theresa Andersson

Jazzfest

April 23, 2004

Here comes Theresa. The woman is storming the scene with her original, emotional songs about love and self-empowerment. The songs weren't the most interesting or best written pop/rock numbers, but when she and her band got their mojo working live, they surpassed that mediocrity. Andersson and her four-piece band(congas,drums, bass, guitar) rocked the Acura Stage Friday afternoon.

The crowd reacted better to her guitar-driven songs, but she still got some feet stomping when she switched to fiddle. Her belief in the hoe-downs got the crowd going, and that was that. Andersson spoke to the crowd with confidence and seemed comfortable in the stage's big shoes. Rain came down, and it added to the festivities by cooling everybody off. A highlight of the set was when guitarist Dave Malone came onstage to play a song. Yeah, he's good, but Andersson was looking good in her tight gold lame dress. She danced dangerously close behind Malone, and when she started moving slow together with her female bassist, tension clouded the air and I heard the male heartbeats quicken in the crowd. I felt like I should have covered the eyes of young drummer Jamal Batiste. He was all smiles as he worked his kit with black gloves and an easy-going ferocity that belied years of practice. Batiste was the backbone of this band. Do we need another Batiste(see: Russell) dominating the New Orleans drum scene? Sure, why not?

Andersson was working hard, and it's paying off. We'll have to see if her recorded songs can get her to where her live band can already take her: the land of the respected musician.


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