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Sharon Jones review: Blistering set of funk and soul

At 58 years old and recently recovered from a cancer scare, American soul singer Sharon Jones could be forgiven for wanting to take it easy.

Instead, she was on stage at the Mandela Hall on Saturday night, leading her 10-piece band the Dap-Kings through a blistering set of soul and funk.

Alternating between coruscating anthems and heartfelt ballads, the likes of Get Up and Get Out, 100 Days, 100 Nights and Retreat! had every foot in the house moving.

The Dap-Kingsboasted two guitarists, a bassist, a drummer, backing singers, a horn section and a percussionist, but all eyes were on Jones. The frontwoman's frenetic, smiling-faced act belied her recent health woes, and her no-nonsense vocals gave the venue's speakers a good seeing to.

In fact, Jones's powerhouse performance steamrollered over any reservations this writer may have had about the group's originality.

From the band members' suits to Jones's call-and-response singing style, this was nothing we hadn't seen or heard before, several decades ago.

But on a pure gut level, it was undeniably effective, and with the likes of Prince and Michael Bublé giving Jones the nod of approval, really, who am I to argue?

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Four stars


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