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Pianist brings breezy jazz to Riverfront

Published 12:04am Thursday, November 3, 2011

For Deborrah Wyndham, writing her first song began in an interesting way — by mistake.

Wyndham

When the southwest Michigan jazz contemporary pianist was practicing a hymn for a church service, she played a wrong note, which sparked the beginning of her first piece, called “The Atmosphere.”
“I hit a wrong note,  and it sounded kind of cool,” she said. “Then, the song came. It’s very full and has a lot going on.”

That mistake led to several months of fruitful song writing in 2006 that produced many of the songs  featured on Wyndham’s newest album, expected to drop at the end of the month.

Wyndham will bring those songs along with arrangements of jazz and ragtime standards to the Riverfront Cafe in Niles Saturday.

The musician, who tours throughout the region and has played more than 2,700 shows, has an eclectic collection of music, including folk, jazz, classical, pop and blues.

Wyndham’s upcoming album, which she recorded at a studio in Waukegan, Ill., is 15 tracks that are a fusion of classical and jazz.

Finishing the record has been a “big relief” for Wyndham.

“It’s all like one big story. It’s mostly images of my life. I put a bunch of feeling into this music,” she said.

Wyndham is frequently asked if she is a graduate of Juilliard or Berklee based on her virtuosity, but she studied piano just five years beginning at age 8. In high school, she began playing professionally.

Wyndham, who performed last weekend at Riverfront Cafe as well, said people can expect another exciting show this weekend.

“It will be a real variety,” she said. “I might play a ragtime piece from 1905 and then one of my original pieces that sounds more classical and then do some Carole King or Joni Mitchell.”

If you go…

What: Deborrah Wyndham in concert
Where: Riverfront Cafe, 219 N. Front St. Niles
When: Saturday, 7 to 10 p.m.
More info: www.deborrahwyndham.com

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