Gabriele Heller (vocals, kazoo);
Paul Beck (keyboard);
Steve Glendinning (guitar);
Dave Parker (double bass);
Gordon Phillips (poetry).


(Review by Ann Alex.)
This was a fine contribution to International Women’s Day from a talented poet, and Gabi and the band, who reached the high standard that we’ve come to expect from this outfit.  And it was free, with tea or coffee and biscuits as well!

Songs by Gabi alternated with Gordon reading out his interesting poems, which ranged from a tale about a woman who loved haggis, to a feminist statementShe’s No Longer Spoken For; a poem about the lack of women on official boards; poems concerning a girl singer; one about a dressmaker; and a poem about a woman who was a refugee from the troubled political situation in Burma.

Gabi began the set with a Quincy Jones song calling out to the sisters (not sure of the title); followed by Broken Silence, (lyrics by Gabi and tune by Steve), a clever song listing lots of broken things related to a broken relationship.There followed a song based on the Burmese poem, with a bluesy chorus of ‘my baby please come home.’

Gabi, as a trained actor, certainly knows how to get the best interpretation out of these songs.  Other songs includedPreacher Woman Blues (Gordon’s lyrics); Gabi’s own song Don’t Mess Around With Me, which includes an amusing kazoo solo from Gabi, plus a bass solo from Dave.  Just about at that moment I spotted a bus passing the window, bearing an advert saying ‘PARKER – has a new venue’.  How did they know about his performance?  A magic coincidence.  The last song was a plea which is made by many a woman, Slow Me Down I’m Tired Lord.

The band did their stuff admirably, as expected, adventurous solos on keys, lyrical playing on guitar, and the bass beautifully grounded, hand beating out a latin rhythm on the wood at one point, then a bit of bowing when needed.  A thoroughly enjoyable gig with a feminist perspective. 
Ann Alex

‘We collaborated on a set of songs about the river Tyne. I had read some of Gordon’s writing, but the piece that he came up with, “To Carry Water to the River”, was way beyond what I had anticipated – a beautiful poem that was wonderful song lyrics as well.

He caught the historical, geographical and political nuances so well, and made my job of writing the music really easy. It remains my favourite composition, and still my best performed piece.We have collaborated on other works since then … Gordon remains someone both deeply literary, but also a practical wordsmith – not a common mix’.

Rick Potter,
Performer, composer, instrument repairer at Rick Potter Music.


Gordon Phillips, who recently shared the stage with Gabrielle mit drie in a jazz/poetry lunchtime session at the Central Library, Newcastle, has kindly sent me this lyric. Gordon has also written the music which, he tells me, has been arranged in 12/8 time by pianist Paul Buck. Well we haven’t got the music but the words read well.

Lance