Emma Hatton | Nancy & Me | Live at The 606 Club, London

For over a decade, Emma Hatton has taken on some of the most prestigious roles in London’s West End, leaving her mark on each one with her unique ability to harness masterful storytelling with each and every note and melody. Her show Nancy and Me is a love letter to the equally dulcet-toned jazz veteran Nancy Wilson and attendees at The 606 Club were able to bear witness to the magic of Wilson and her work through Hatton.

Wilson once said “I am a product of everything I’ve ever heard — the voice just had a life of its own.” When looking at Wilson through Hatton, it’s clear there are many parallels between the two artists; both masters of their instruments, transcending many genres of music, including musical theatre, Hatton has effortlessly found a place for herself and her voice within the jazz genre.

First debuted in April 2022, Hatton’s Nancy and Me show is a project that was first inspired by one of her biggest inspirations, Nancy Wilson, describing the texture of her voice as something Hatton will “forever be inspired by.” Explaining at her performance at The 606 Club in London, Hatton explains that, after performing at the Cheltenham Jazz Festival, she went on a deep dive into Wilson’s work.

“The first time I heard Nancy Wilson’s voice, something just cracked open in me,” explained Hatton. “She has the most exquisite tone, and her handling of lyrics is second to none.” Hatton’s impressively put-together set is punctuated with some of Wilson’s greatest works such as (You Don’t Know) How Glad I Am, West Coast Blues, People Will Say We’re in Love. Accompanied by a four-piece band, the show also featured a new arrangement of one of Wilson’s best-known songs, “Sunny”, arranged by Richard Sidwell, which alongside the song “Guess Who I Saw Today” truly showcases the depth of Hatton’s remarkable ability to act through song and use her voice to illicit an array of emotions that very few can do.

Breathing new life and sentimentality whilst also holding so much of Wilson’s heart and essence into the material, it’s clear that there is space within the genre for Emma Hatton beyond Nancy Wilson.

Words & Photography Amelia Walker

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