It’s been a habit of mine to post up some memorable moments from each Symposium after the dust settles. My brain is so full of the event itself (and the voice at the back of my head) that this process helps me enjoy the day – albeit in hindsight. So, I’d like to kick off celebrating Nicci Reed, who closed our Symposium in May 2019.
I first heard Nicci sing a long, long time ago at Speakeasy – up on the stage (I think) in the back room of The Source. It seems a lifetime ago now – and an experience suffused with the presence of Nick P.. Nicci’s songs are special things: they don’t do the expected things. There are lovely chords that pull you out of the trajectory you were on; there are brilliant turns of melody that weave around the rhythm; sometimes they conjure for me the sound of a piano played one key at a time by a jazz musician, a melody remembered long after midnight. Then there’s the inventive guitar tunings and chords and the craft in the songs. You might have heard the ‘nightjrrs’ version of ‘Lavender’ – if so, you’ll have heard how different, and how brilliantly different, and how differently brilliant the version she played live was. I’ve seen Nicci play a lot of keyboard recently, and been amazed by that – so it was nice to be able to revel in her guitar playing also. I heard her singing described as ‘perfect’ and ‘like an angel’ by other Symposium-goers: it was absolutely brilliant to hear her voice ring out across the Symposium. A perfect end to the day!
(Picture by Phil Hewitson)