It was an impressive turnout at the Ironwood Stage & Grill last night for Calgary singer/songwriter Jenn Beaupré’s CD release party – a sold-out house filled front to back, side to side…
Backed up for her first set with a full band, Beaupré was able to recreate the studio sound of her latest CD “Reach Out” for the audience, complete with a 3-piece horn section, backup singers, and a solid rhythm section that allowed her to focus on singing those songs.
The Ironwood is a great venue on its own, but when a powerhouse vocalist takes to the microphone, there really wasn’t a bad seat in the house. Well, I may be a bit biased, I was right up front. However her flawless vocal range was proof that listeners to the CD weren’t being fooled by studio coverups – Beaupré hits her notes with confidence and experience.
From Motown-flavoured original songs like “Sunburn“, “Reach Out” and “Eyes All Over“, to her heartbreaking ballad “Angel Who’s Lost“, where she had a violinist accompany her pianist, this third album is likely to get serious attention, if the audience reactions and standing ovations last night are any indication.
She writes relatable songs that often have some great, fun lyrics, like the aforementioned “Eyes All Over“.
Her second set (after performing every song on her new album in the first one) was solo acoustic, aside from some accompaniment from a guitarist on a few songs.
In this set, Beaupré had fun covering songs (and a few originals), but gave no short change to quality control in performing hits from Ed Sheeran (Thinking Out Loud), Amos Lee (Colors), Joni Mitchell ( A Case Of You), and even a bit of inspired Whitney Houston, along with the crowd-pleaser them from Frozen, “Let It Go“, although to be fair, she did warn anyone that had kids in advance, in case of a possible overdose of the uber-popular Disney song.
Reach Out is available now in iTunes, or if you are able to catch her performing live, I would highly recommend you do so. If you can catch her in a smaller, more intimate venue, you should take certainly advantage of that opportunity.
I caught up with Jenn earlier, before this show. You can read the feature interview in my Calgary Herald blog by scrolling down a post or two in this site,or by clicking here. You can also view the companion video podcast here.