BALOISE SESSION 2017 review – Part 2

Gilberto Gil orchestra

By Rosine Alleva and Jose Oliveira, Journalist-Photographers, Rock At Night France, Switzerland.

This evening was very much expected! The highlight of the Basel Festival …..

Annie Goodchild

ANNIE GOODCHILD had the privilege to be selected for the opening act to the great ALICIA KEYS second show at this BALOISE SESSION 2017.
What a great discovery, what a surprise! This American singer from New York is based in Basel since a few years cause „this is the place to be“ as she mentioned to the audience.
Especially that evening, when hitting the big stage of the famous indoor Festival to open for ALICIA KEYS! As soon as she began to sing, it was enormous, what a tremendous voice and what a personality. Her presence on stage and her charisma definitely delighted the audience.
ANNIE GOODCHILD  toured with her former band “Melou” all over Europe and US as well as with “Scott Bradlee’s Postmodern Jukebox. In September 2016, she released her first solo EP “ A Random Physical Sensation”. Her music is influenced by many styles, from world music to soul, blues, rock, folk, electronic. All added to her beautiful, warm, soul voice, she will carry you to her world and you might well stay there…ANNIE GOODCHILD, a great artist to see and discover !


This beautiful young lady fairy tale, who became a scintillating

Alicia Keys

Superstar in the firmament of the best artists of the 21st century, Alicia Keys owes it to the founder of Atlantic Records, Clive Davis. Renowned for discovering talents (Bruce Springsteen, Smith Patti, Withney Houston …) he scented the jackpot by signing her just after high school…How to resist a Diva who gives you such a great smile and stimulated a whole part of your existence! How not falter when, in the giant speakers of a festival resonate “FALLIN’”, “SUPERWOMAN” or just her favorite one “BLENDED FAMILY (WHAT YOU DO FOR LOVE)” just to name famous Hits, making the audience stand up and dance! On this year’s program, ALICIA KEYS got the lion’s share, offering 2 shows to her faithful Swiss public! Rock at Night was present on the second night.
The Superstar and Béatrice STIRNIMANN,

Béatrice Stirnimann

the director of the festival, share the same passion: BRAZIL! Having participated last September to the famous festival of the international music scene ROCK IN RIO and very impressed, the beautiful ALICIA KEYS started her show on the Baloise Session stage by “BRAZIL OUTRO”, immediately establishing a subdued tropical atmosphere. Standing behind her microphone or offering more intimate moments with her voice and her elegant piano playing, ALICIA KEYS delivered to the Swiss audience a set of a staggering mastery, where Soul, Hip-Hop and R & B were vectors of pure emotion.

Alicia Keys

Most of the lyrics were showing strong love messages and it’s with more sentimental feelings than ever, that she delivered some of her finest songs in years. The artist was dancing and having good time on stage around hip-hop rhythmic, influenced by her husband Swizz Beatz. She knew exactly when to hold back to get the crowd to sing along (with “Fallin’”).Her set was also based on “HERE” (from her last album) but also revisiting “GIRL ON FIRE” or even “AS I AM”. It was a high-energy show, where on stage no detail had been ignored like a real American act. It was an unforgettable evening and ALICIA KEYS left the stage after telling the public she absolutely loved the city of Basel, leaving a delighted audience. See her fabulous concert until January 7 on Arte TV.


Kool & The Gang

How a worthy representative of Dance Music could cross 5 decades, fighting against currents (pop, new wave, disco …) and tides (techno, Rap, R & B …) and reach the 21st century, still intact and able to fill rooms, often far away, even worldwide. Some mysteries in Life are difficult to explain.They started as a jazz act in the sixties but survived five decades later with their particular funky dancing sound. Always able to put the fire to the house as they did it here in Basel. Some of the original members of KOOL & THE GANG have passed on, but the actual musicians still includes the four original founders. The 11-piece jazz funk and R&B band got their name from the founder and leader ROBERT “KOOL” BELL, and this for the past….50 years!!! it is no wonder that KOOL & THE GANG  holds the record for longevity of the R & B groups that have been in business for so long. True to their reputation, and essentially live artists, the KOOL & THE GANG musicians continue to perform sold-out concerts around the world, and it was the case as well here in Basel. Desirous of musical authenticity and sincerity, the group remains true to its roots where funk stays the fundamental element, with minimalist guitar parts and the lyrics describing a peaceful world. While keeping their style, they included younger members who bring a certain freshness to the trend of the moment in the music industry. On this subject you will read in a further article what ROBERT “KOOL” BELL confided us in an exclusive interview for RAN a few days after the band dazzled the crowd on the Swiss stage!

Amadou & Mariam

AMADOU & MARIAM fetish couple, are project ambassadors for solidarity and fight against hunger in Africa. All their songs link us to Malian culture, the country where they are born. The songs are all as much revendicatives, denouncing corruption, poverty and injustice that reign in some African countries. Their passage as support band to Gilberto Gil concert fits in perfectly, for their aspirations of peace and love! Their set knew how to create an atmosphere and a perfect communion with the audience. AMADOU & MARIAM enabled the BALOISE SESSION public to have a better understanding of the Malian culture specificity. With them, we would be delighted to leave “on a Sunday Bamako”!

GILBERTO GIL, this representative of the movement Brazilian “tropicalissimo,” has always received a indisputable support from his Brazilian admirers who live in Europe and especially in Switzerland. They were many to come to vibrate and hear the songs that have made his Fame.

Gilberto Gil

But the BALOISE SESSION had the huge privilege to see in preview, three parts of his new project: a Opera on Love!…Which contains forty-five themes and includes all the passion ingredients such as jealousy, erotism, rage, loneliness …and with exquisite feature : the passion of a human being for a God! Twenty three musicians, Portuguese and Brazilian, under the baton of the Italian Maestro Aldo BRIZZI , accompanied on stage the child of Baia. This ambitious project, co-written by GIL and Aldo BRIZZI , so different from all themes that have made his Fame, would necessarily displease few “aficionados of the Bossa Nova”! Some left in the middle of the show. But gradually, as his project was musically highlighted, we appreciated a lot. No doubt that the Opera will be one of the most popular works in 2018. Rivers of ink will flow!! Its release is already announced in Brazil for the second half of 2018. Only three cities – “London, Helsinki and Basel” – had the privilege to present this show. Of course, GILBERTO GIL still gratified his faithful public with a few themes that everyone expected, such as “EU VIM DA BAIA,” TODA A MENINA BAIANA “,” DARA-IJEXA “and the reggae incursion he loves ” NO WOMAN, NO CRY “! He delights us every time and makes us prefer his artistic status than the political one. He was Minister of culture from 2003 to 2008! Finally, a beautiful night with Brazilian rhythms warmed up our hearts !!’ 


Jose Oliveira

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