CABARET FESTIVAL – Amber Martin – Janis: Undead – 4.5K

amber janisamber janis straightBy Julie Robins

Accurately described in the promotional material as  “a psychedelic celebration of the late, great Janis Joplin” this is no mere impersonation, or simple tribute show.
Always a fan of Joplin’s art but not generally fond of tribute shows, I chose to attend this one partly because I was intrigued by the contrast between the image conveyed by the photo of Amber and the content of her show. She looked far too demure, far too straight. She isn’t. Not by a long shot.
Her phenomenal stage presence and incredible vocals held her audience captivated from the moment she entered the room.
Born just one month after Janis’ death, in their shared birthplace of Port Arthur Texas, Amber obviously feels a deep connection to her story. Through song, storytelling and monologue she shares her enthusiasm for her subject.
With an excellent backing band which consisted of her New York based musical director on keyboards and three accomplished Adelaide musicians, the renditions of songs, mostly from the album Pearl, were faultless. A psychedelic light show and band members donning sixties personas soon had us forgetting that it was actually 3pm on an Adelaide Sunday afternoon. Amber’s costume was mildly confusing, and a bit distracting, but her skill and force of personality helped override this.
With passion and humour she led us through a gamut of emotions. She had us laughing, cheering and, occasionally, shedding a tear or two.
This was Amber Martin’s first time performing in Australia. Hopefully she will return. She included one of her own songs in this show and it would be interesting to experience more of her work.

Kryztoff Rating   4.5K

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