Sweet, Sour and Saucy Jazz Bar

Husband and wife duo Melissa Western and Tnee Dyer premiered their new show at the Jazz Bar today, and it proved to be an event tailor-made for the Fringe. Rather than settling for a straight concert of jazz standards, they have contrived a one hour 1950s style radio show, presented by agony aunt and uncle Barbara and Barry. These two characters dispense advice of a (more often than not) somewhat dubious nature to a stream of callers and letter writers with problem love lives. How can you tell if your dance teacher wants more than just a dance? What to do if your wife wants to attend a swingers party? Ask Barbara and Barry – “We’re the experts!”

While some of these work better than others, it all keeps things moving along.
Nevertheless, the main substance is the music, and Melissa’s vocal work – plus washboard, spoons and tap dancing – backed by Tnee on piano and vocals is what makes the show worth your while. The choice of material includes “I’m a Woman” “Baby It’s Cold Outside” and “I Got Rhythm” so it’s quality all the way.

The hour ended with “Bye Bye Blackbird”, Melissa coaxing a somewhat reticent audience to sing along – I guess mid-afternoon was just a bit early, and the audience a bit too sober, for this to work.

Catch them if you can, they’re here for the Festival and there are a lot worse ways to spend an afternoon.

Jim Welsh