Wendy-Kirkland- [Harborough] 1/7/22
During lockdown from March 2020, Wendy and guitarist/bassist husband Pat Sprakes entertained with a daily dose of Latin American music on Facebook which they entitled Latin Lockdowns. After 86 such performances they decided it was time to move on to other musical endeavours, but were amazed and pleased to receive daily messages from people who described the videos in such terms as “a ray of sunshine” in their lockdown situations.
Wendy’s musical career began at age 10, when she started taking piano lessons. She won a scholarship to have all her lessons paid for by Derbyshire Music, and continued to take her ABRSM piano grades.
Switching to jazz in her late teens, Wendy continued her playing career as a dance class pianist, accompanist to singers and as a keyboardist in club bands.
After being persuaded to sing by a great friend and guitarist, Bill McCreath, Wendy learned to reach people who are perhaps turned off by instrumental jazz, as she learnt to communicate with the audience through the songs.
Wendy’s voice has been likened to Blossom Dearie with hints of Diana Krall.
Current projects include Piano Divas, a tribute to the female pianist singers of jazz; hammond organ jazz outfit Organik Fource featuring Pat Sprakes on guitar and guest saxophonist; Organik Trio Goes To The Movies and The Organik Cookbook celebrating the early soul-jazz albums of George Benson.
Wendy is married to jazz guitarist and bass player Pat Sprakes. They met by chance on a gig and have been making music together ever since.
Wendy and Pat have a unique part to play in the history and development of the jazz at Stray’s, in that they have supported us since we first started. Add to that, they essentially mentored Mat in his early bass-playing days, having him sit in with them as a drumless trio, encouraging and pushing him. So, to have them back with us, after this long break is like the jazz is coming home again…
FRIDAY NIGHT JAZZ SESSIONS AT STRAY’S ARE SPONSORED BY PRIMEPRINT…
HOW IT WORKS:
Doors open at 7:30pm and food is available to order from this time, until 9:00pm. Seats are unallocated, so get in early if you have specific requirements – please note, we always give priority to elderly, single and customers with disabilities.
We want you to have a great night with us! However, one man’s boogie is another man’s dirge, so we operate a minimal talking policy during the performances. We ask you to consider your neighbours in this respect.
We offer incentives to buy tickets on the night, to forthcoming gigs and recommend buying these in the interval, to save you waiting at the end of the night.
Lastly, from the staff at Stray’s and the house band, we look forward to seeing you and sharing some fabulous jazz with you…