Tuesday, April 13, 2010

It's Been A Long Time...

It's been a long time since we laughed together,
It's been a long time since we cried ...

(written by Steven Van Zandt on Southside Johnny's Better Days album)

Well, it HAS been a long time. Sorry for the delay ... so much has happened in the last couple of weeks ...
- the five Jovi shows (I never did really write about Mohegan 2 or DC)
- an off-the-wall Jukes show at BB Kings
- an amazing gig by Jeff Kazee and Jeff Golub at this tiny bar on the UWS
- the release of Lorenza Ponce's new album "Soul Shifter" (more on that later)
- the Memphis webcast interview (see this post)
- etc etc etc

But, I promised I'd recap the Memphis CD signing ... so here I am.

So, last Tuesday I met up with my friend Linda (all these pictures are hers!) and her friend Taylor to catch the cast perform songs from the show and sign the newly released cast recording. T was able to arrive at Barnes & Noble early and was number ONE in line, and though I'm not a first row kind of person for these things (BJ shows are a totally different matter LOL), we ended up sitting dead center right in front of the stage.

After a brief introduction by the B&N guy and some quick media pictures, David Bryan and Joe DiPietro came out to serve as quasi-hosts for the afternoon. We all know that David can be funny, but I swear that he and Joe should do stand-up comedy. They were hysterically funny. And, I do believe David recognized me (how could he not after that run of Jovi shows? I'm sure he was thinking "oh lordy, her again. LOL)

A clip of David and Joe talking about the record ...

Joe Depietro and David Bryan Introduction from Memphis the Musical on Vimeo.

First up was the song "Change Don't Come Easy" which was great ... the actor who plays Huey's mom is fantastic and really delivers it with a lot of spunk. And I love that comical line "so stop with all the dramaaaa" ROFL It seems that David and Joe re-wrote a song for this character many, many times. Well, it may have taken a while, but they definitely got it right!

Next up was Montego singing "Colored Women" ... and she once again blew me away. I had heard her that close up when I went to Joe's Pub back in May of last year (you can read about that here) but it never gets old. She has an incredible presence on stage.

David actually told a funny story about when he was working on the song at the studio in his house. We all know that David has a very powerful, commanding voice and I could totally see him belting this out with a complete depth of emotion. He opened the door to find his twins (who were 10 at the time) and one of them said "Dad, you are NOT a colored woman" (I'm sure with all the attitude a typical kid that age has. LOL)

In any case, Montego just nailed it.

After Montego, Chad Kimball took the stage for "Memphis Lives in Me." For those who haven't seen the production, when you do, you will be crying your eyes out during this song. It comes at such a pivotal point in the show and Chad will just take your breath away.

Throughout the event, David and Joe would pop up on stage to say a few words and share some anecdotes about the art of collaboration (it seems Joe can easily be swayed with a good cup of coffee?! LOL) and the learning curve that came in terms of David writing for Broadway (he now knows what the definition of an "11 o'clock number" is.)

Once the performances were completed, we had the opportunity to have our CDs signed by the cast. Actually, the whole process was super-simple and it was great that Joe recognized me from the night before.

Here was the finished product. :-) (I actually got one signed for my mom, too ... she is waiting anxiously for it to come to Cincinnati ... hint hint)

And a little video recap of the event ...

Memphis Live @ Lincoln Center Barnes and Noble from Memphis the Musical on Vimeo.

It was a fabulous afternoon diversion ... for then I had to return to the office to finish a proposal. But, no worries ... I just bought a ticket to see the show again (I have lost count ... maybe that's time 11 or 12?) as a birthday present to myself. See?! I can always find a way to justify it. Haha.

Okay ... that's all for now folks ...

Oh ... except ...

If you haven't ordered your copy of Lorenza Ponce's new album, you should do it NOW. The fabulous (or crazy) Lorenza has decided to sign every CD purchased in April. Can't wait to receive mine ... but in the meantime am enjoying the video of the live performance of "Soul Shifter"