Reviews For Sense
The enduring success of Sense has been a heartening endorsement for Tubby a plucky woman, respected by musical peers for her fragile, jazz-tinged vocal performances, who remains modest about her talent. But the commercial triumph has given her confidence a noticeable boost. "Some people almost convinced me that I didn't have the ability to sell myself, and now I know that's crap,'' Tubby said flatly. "I was initially wary of doing promotion, but soon realised that I was promoting something I'm very proud of my music. "It wasn't as if I was out there selling my soul. I just encouraged others to accept something that I believe is good.''
Selling Sense to the public has been a masterstroke of organisation and determination by Round Records - a fiercely independent backyard label involving Tubby in collaboration with Steve Matters and Terry Bradford. The trio believed it had an album which could attract widespread support if it was heard, so invested money in a television advertising campaign to establish a profile for Tubby and her music.
"It was such a simple idea, yet nobody had done it before,'' she said. "That's probably because it's an exhausting, exacting task. Do the campaign badly and you've blown your money. It took a lot of courage to take that step into the unknown. "We gained a lot of knowledge along the way, about selling records and about television. "The power of the television medium is totally underestimated.''
Television advertising created such demand for Sense that it stretched the resources of Round Records to the limit. Having realised its capacity, Round Records now is ready to develop its promotional role. "We're confident enough to take my next record interstate for promotion and advertising,'' Tubby said. "We haven't recorded the second album yet, but we have lots of wonderful songs. "It won't be the same as Sense we honestly can't expect to repeat the energy and spirit of those sessions but I can feel that enthusiasm is building to an exciting level.''
Tubby's confidence has been boosted after several
brief seasons of club performances. Reaction to her shows has been so
strong that Melbourne promoters have already offered Tubby work in premiere
jazz venues in February a rare honor from the snobbish jazz fraternity.
Tubby is chuffed, but still refuses to be classified specifically as a
jazz singer. "I can't deny where my musical inspiration came from,
but I'm really not like anyone else,'' she said. "A tag never quite
covers the total music I tackle. It's just Tubby Justice music.''
This woman can sing and has a great ear for a song.
HAVING long held reign as Adelaide's queen of subterranean
cabaret, Tubby Justic emerges on her first solo album as an alluring chanteuse
with a haunting vocal delivery. Tubby pours her heart out in 14 fresh
compositions which dwell on more sombre, reflective visions of love and
life. An understated canvas of instumentation constructed by Steve Matters
and Terry Bradford, often consisting of no more than piano and upright
bass, provides a stark backdrop for each track and allows the vulnerability
and emotive tone of Tubby's voice to cut through. While much of the album
dwells on the same minor-key plateau, there are several jazzy flourishes.
The cool be-bop of Inside Himself, bleakness of Out of Jazz, cabaret swarm
of Come Be Mine and fragile beauty of Trust are immediately arresting,
while the jaunty wit of Called Up, adventurous arrangement in Nowhere
and evocative Thicker than Water provide essential contrast. Tubby Justice
demands close listening and not all will last the distance of an entire
album, although the rewards are plentiful for the patient.