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Nat King Cole’s 'little' brother will be playing at the Alhaurín de la Torre jazz festival next weekend
04.07.14 - 13:03 -
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“I would love to see some flamenco while I’m in Andalucía”
Freddy Cole and his Quartet will be in Alhaurín next week. :: SUR
American singer and musician Freddy Cole, youngest brother of Nat ‘King’ Cole, will be performing at the El Portón Jazz festival in Alhaurín de la Torre on the 11th July as part of a series of weekly concerts throughout July. From his home in Atlanta, Georgia, 82-year-old Freddy speaks to SUR in English about his forthcoming trip to Malaga, his music and his plans for Independence Day.
Have you been to Malaga before Freddy?
No this will be my first trip to Malaga but I have been to Spain a few times before and it has always been very rewarding. This tour will take me to a number of cities over 25 days, including Madrid, Barcelona, Valencia and the Canary Islands, as well as shows in France and Belgium. It is a busy schedule but I would love to see some flamenco while I’m in Andalucía.
Will you be performing songs you have written as part of the show in Alhaurín?
I don’t know yet! I never know what I’m going to play in advance. I let the audience lead me along. It’s just a feeling that you get at the time that makes me think if something might go down well on the night. There’s no telling what I might play but there is a good chance it will include some of my own songs.
Do you have a favourite song?
Every song I play and sing is a favourite. If I don’t like it, I won’t perform it. I get joy out of the music.
Can you think of a song you wish you had written yourself?
Oh probably one of the big pop songs from the last year that did really well like ‘Blurred Lines’ or ‘Happy!’ I have written pop songs before.
You’ve worked with many artists over the years. Is there a favourite artist you particularly enjoyed working with or someone you wish you had worked with?
I’ve worked with so many people that I have loved, admired and enjoyed. It would be difficult to pick one person when you have worked with the best of the best. I never performed with my brother Nat but I did play piano on two or three of his records and I have done a few different things with my niece Natalie Cole, including a show at the Newport Jazz Festival just last year.
You come from a big musical family but did you ever imagine you would still be touring and performing at 82 years of age?
I never really thought about it. I am just happy and blessed to be in the position I am in. When you are in the people business as we musicians are, you never really retire.
You have had a successful recording and song writing career. Do you prefer performing live or working in the studio?
I really enjoy working with people. There is a certain vibe when you see the faces of the audience and watch the tapping of their toes. It is something that connects you and allows you to reach out and touch someone with your music.
This article will be published on American Independence Day. What does the 4th of July look like in the Cole household?
Well this year I will be flying to the Montreal Jazz Festival on the 4th July for a one-day concert before heading to Spain but usually we have a big cook-out with corn on the cob, burgers on the grill and steaks!