Sportsmen's Tavern, Buffalo, NY
The sexy gypsy-jazz-retro look can easily pass for disingenuousness, but Miss Tess pulls it off with her style, songwriting, and melodies plucked from the early jazz era. Her band was young, super-tight/talented, and visibly enjoyed the music (Upright bass, reed player and drummer). I don’t remember the particular tune, but there was a defining point early in the show where her voice truly opened up and I was no longer listening to the heavy influences of this genre. I was also incredibly impressed by her guitar playing, much like Madeleine Peyroux (who is one of those heavy influences), but again, her voice on the guitar is taking shape as well. I of course left at half-time, but the crowd was swelling, swaying and spilling out into the street, so a return should be in order.