China Moses: Bringing Back the Good Times
"Look, I've always been a soul, R'n'B singer. Never in my wildest dreams or my craziest thoughts, did I imagine I would end up doing jazz and blues, even though I'm a big blues fan, because that's what I was drawn to when I was little. I mean jazz was cool but give me a dirty blues and I was really happy. I was an Etta James, Esther Phillips chick. I love rough, feisty girls. Betty Davis, Millie Jackson, Carleen Andersonthose were the singers that I got really attached to. I liked rowdy, loud-mouthed women. I mean I like jazz too but vocal jazz right now is all so low key. I don't know how it got that way. Ella wasn't low key, Sarah wasn't low key, Billie wasn't low key."
On her MySpace page Moses says bravely, "I'm going all the way." She certainly has what it takes to do just that. So how would she feel about touring the US? Here real life kicks in. "I don't know. I've always been scared of the States. I've always thought I didn't have enough talent. And I feel split. I feel at home in France, though I also feel at home in the US when I'm there. But the biggest problem with the States is that I have my job at MTV to consider. Hell, it's a fun job and I don't want to have to give it up."
If she doesn't take her Dinah Washington show to America, one person who will be extremely disappointed is Marion Hudspeth, aged 86, who lives in Las Vegas. She is Moses' maternal grandmother and her greatest fan. "She called me up the other day and said, 'Hey China, I'm groovin' to your record.' Then she started dancing round the living room."
No doubt Mrs Hudspeth felt much as her granddaughter did after the Marseille gig. Moses' parting shot as she left to grab a bite to eat was: "Hey, I'm happy! How disgusting is that?"
This One's For Dinah (Blue Note 2009)
Good Lovin' (Virgin 2004)
On tourne en rond (Source 2000)