Review: You’ve Got a Friend – The Music of James Taylor and Carole King

Harlow Playhouse / Wed 14th Sep 2016 am30 10:55am

You’ve Got a Friend – The Music of James Taylor and Carole King

By Tony Collier

EMILY Hollands and Bill Lennon complimented each other and were a strikingly realistic tribute to the original pairing of Carole King and James Taylor, physically and musically.

The set opened gently and quietly, with Emily (as Carole) alighting the stage alone in semi darkness, she removed her shoes, took to the piano and opened the show with a remarkably stunning rich and strong voice.

The backdrop curtain, subdued sunset lighting and props made for a very relaxed, mellow setting, props of rugs and lamps gave the Harlow Playhouse main auditorium an intimate, ‘front room’ concert feel.

The unique group of very able and talented musicians, Alan Parker, Scott Poley and Jim ‘E’ Williams ensured that musically ‘Carole’ and ‘James’ were supported as though there were twice that number in the band; together the ebullientcast reproduced brilliant versions of the many original classics.

The song list from Carole King’s award winning Tapestry album, amongst many others, together with hits from James Taylor’s back list were interspersed with recollections of the personal histories of the pair and the story of their lifelong, enduring friendship which also resulted in many successful musical collaborations.

Hits from Carole King’s prolific catalogue including ‘You Make Me Feel Like A Natural Woman’and ‘Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow’ were recreated with incredible ease. Our two reviewers, who were at least a generation apart and decades younger than both Carole & James both enjoyed this show immensely. The show was a soothing, comforting, tonic away from the maelstrom of everyday life.

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