November 12, 1997
After becoming a mother a few years ago, singer Sofia Laiti became less visible on the New York club scene (although she did release her impressive CD, The Midnight Sun Will Never Set, independently in 1997).The Finnish immigrant's recent engagement at New York's Tavern On The Green marked her return to performing after a two-year hiatus, and as she approached the stage of the pricey tourist trap, Laiti was understandably nervous. But when Laiti, who was joined only by pianist James Weidman, opened with "Easy To Remember," her soulful charisma came through loud and clear. And she was no less confident on "Darn That Dream," "I Thought About You" and the sultry Peggy Lee hit "Fever." Thankfully, the lyrical Weidman (who recorded an enjoyable trio date, People Music for the Swiss TCB label) had plenty of room to solo.
Of course, The Tavern is primarily a restaurant rather than a jazz club, and Laiti's sets were heard by tourists more than seasoned jazz fans. One hopes that in the future, hardcore jazz audiences will again have a chance to enjoy Laiti's talents.