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Story and photos by James WalkerIsland Girl Music recording artist Lisa Deveaux returned to her Chicago roots for a special engagement at Close Up 2 on December 30, 2009 before a capacity crowd. Lisa's appearance at CU2 attracted an overflow crowd that consisted of relatives, old friends and fans alike. The lovely Ms. Deveaux now resides in Los Angeles but hinted to the possibility of returning to Chicago to make the "second city" her base.
On this pre-New Years Eve, Lisa highlighted her two set night with many selections from her highly acclaimed CD Shakin' That Jazz. Featured on that CD are Bobby Lyle, Karen Briggs and Everette Harp, well respected smooth jazz artists.
Joining Lisa on stage included keyboardists Ken Davis and Jacques Davis, bassist Curtis Clark, drummer Keith Stubblefield and guitarist Phil Seed. In addition, she was assisted by two background singers.
Lisa opened the first set with "Look Of Love" and "Under my Skin," before she showcased an original, "Lazy Monday Afternoon." Her delivery of these numbers were done in a very seductive manner, yet jazzy and classy. Unfortunately, a large group of revelers in the bar area of the club were loud and classless. Nevertheless, the professional Ms. Deveaux focused her delivery on those who were there to hear her beautiful instrument: clear, firm and enviably focused.
The second set was opened with "Second Nature", another number taken from her debut CD that she recorded with keyboardist Bobby Lyle. This song is ideal for Lisa, as it affords her the opportunity to succinctly express herself in an articulate and concise manner. She's very convincing without being over dramatic.
The title song, "Shakin' That Jazz" that was written by Lisa followed. This mid- tempo number had the audience tapping feet and nodding heads to the approval of this infectious song.
Other songs delivered during this set included "California Dreaming," "Simple Things," "You Are The One" and "You Belong To Me," which will appear on her next CD.
Before closing out the set with "You Are The One," Lisa hit her peak and had the audience in awe with her version of "At Last." Her sparkling vocal instrument and ability to rearrange Etta James' classic without committing musical sacrilege impressed ALL in attendance.
Despite the inattentiveness of some of the patrons, Lisa was a hit and
captivated the hearts of those in attendance with the sensuous sounds
of this lovely songstress. Let's hope Lisa does return to Chicago to make home
her base, because she would be a positive influence on the Chicago Smooth Jazz
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