I am who I am today by a variety of experiences and inputs. Some are more obvious than others, some are more revered than others. One of the most crucial influences in my life is that of music. There was the music in my home and then there was the music at school and the music that school introduced. One of the most important influences in my musical development at an early age was my music teacher at Secondary School. She was also my first English teacher at the time and turned me onto acting and the power of the spoken and written word, so I owe quite a lot to Mrs Michelle McBride. She’s part of a special group of teachers that I’d like to see again and thank them for all they ever did for me.
In Mrs McBride’s case she opened my ears to jazz. I never gave it much thought before, but she evidently was keen on the style. In not too dissimilar a style she also introduced me to Ella Fitzgerald. Her versions of Mack the Knife has to go down as the best just for their swinging manner and tributes to the ones done by Bobby Darin and Louis Armstrong. She knows how to vocal her way through a song like virtually no one else.
This video is a brief version of some longer versions she’s dedicated to record. Such a masterful vocalist and such a masterful song. I’m grateful for the chance to hear it and have a whole style of music for me to appreciate thanks to brilliant teachers like Mrs McBride. Enjoy.