VANCE GILBERT


Saturday, Dec. 6, 1997






VANCE GILBERT is one of the very few African-American artists to embrace the singer/songwriter genre. With an uncompromising edge, his live shows have become legend for bringing an uncanny fusion of jazz styling to the folk music confessional. His shimmering and off-beat solos elegantly take on social issues with heartfelt lyrics that wring out emotions from despair to euphoria. With "the voice of an angel, the wit of the devil and the guitar of a god", he performs killer songs about wrenching separation suffered by single parents, the tug between love's desires and demands, and the bitterness of being a nonwhite performer in the predominantly white world of modern folk music.

VANCE GILBERT has a contagious sense of craftiness to his performance featuring a full-bodied breezy tenor voice which is enhanced by sophisticated guitar riffs that are filled with a graceful finger picking style on jazz-flavored chords. This well rounded performer also has a flair for improv comedy that he aptly demonstrates between songs. His comical hijinks often fall over to his musical sets when he blends in his own brand of "Country- Western Rap" which includes some pretty fine yodeling to boot! This is the performer who is in complete command of a remarkable fresh new sound that has shared the stage with everyone from Aretha Franklin to Mary Chapin Carpenter, Jay Leno, Bill Cosby and Arlo Guthrie.