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Here's what I've enjoyed seeing or reading so far...hope you enjoy them as well!

      

 

Wednesday
Jan062016

Adam's Call: Lorna Luft "Triumph" at Feinstein's/54 Below: Celebration of Life

Lorna Luft and Call Me Adam at Feinstien's/54 BelowThere is a reason Lorna Luft entitled her current Feinstein's/54 Below concert Triumph. The reason is because her show is triumphant! Just 18 weeks ago, Lorna was in an operating room fighting for her life while she had a taxing 7-hour surgery for breast cancer. Now Lorna is up on stage singing her heart and soul out! 

In Triumph, Lorna sings songs about life, love, and accentuating the positive. She shows us what it really means to be alive through songs from the American Songbook including a Johnny Mercer medley and a great finale about being cut that you can't miss! Lorna has an energy like no other! Her voice is powerful, her belt raises the roof, and her control makes her one of the best singers around! She keeps the torch lit with her talent!

In addition to her singing, Lorna told some great stories behind the songs as well as behind her battle with breast cancer. It's through these tales that Lorna's heart, soul, and humor are revealed even more. I loved hearing about these special behind-the-scene moments.

To really understand how incredible this concert is, you need to buy a ticket and see Lorna Luft for yourself! She is the epitome of loving life and being grateful for every moment given to you! So, start this New Year off right and celebrate life with Lorna Luft Triumph at Feinstein's/54 Below (254 West 54th Street, between Broadway & 8th Avenue)! Lorna has just two concerts left on Friday, January 8 at 7pm and 9:30pm. Click here for tickets!

That's Adam's Call and I Stand For Entertainment!

Saturday
Dec262015

Adam's Call: Mathieu Blue: Merry Christmas To You at The Metropolitan Room: Merry and Bright

Mathieu Blue and Call Me Adam at "Merry Christmas To You" at The Metropolitan Room NYCLast October was the first time I saw Mathieu Blue in concert (click here for that review). It was then he announced he was going to be doing a Christmas show in December. Well, December couldn't come quick enough and now it has gone by too quickly and Mathieu, once again, left me wanting more! His Christmas show at The Metropolitan Room was exactly what a holiday show should be...merry and bright! He sang a mixture of holiday classics, Adele, and a yet-to-be-released original composition. 

Let's start with the classics. Mathieu opened the show hitting all the high notes with "Silent Night." This was a great way to get the show started! His sultry voice captivated me in a way it hadn't before. He had the whole room silent until he finished, when the audience gave a rousing round of applause! Mathieu also sang two of my favorite Mariah Carey songs, "Miss You Most (At Christmas Time)" and "All I Want For Christmas Is You" from her 1994 Merry Christmas album. He did a great job with both these songs. "All I Want For Christmas Is You" was a terrific way to end his show because it's a song everyone knows, loves, and can sing along to. It definitely left me smiling.

Mathieu Blue "Merry Christmas To You" at The Metropolitan Room NYCAnother song, Mathieu performed was Adele's "When We Were Young," which I wouldn't think of when I think of holiday songs, but Mathieu set up this song really well. He talked about how we all get caught up in making sure we get pictures of everything we do instead of just enjoying a moment and quality time with those you love. He suggested that this year we take those pictures in our mind instead of on camera. He then went into "When We Were Young." Now, not everyone can sing an Adele song well, but Mathieu did! 

The highlight of the evening, however, was Mathieu's original, yet-to-be-released holiday song, "My Gift." It's a beautiful song about finding love. I, for one, can't wait to get this song to be released next year! It's going to be an instant classic!

The holiday season should be all about smiles, laughter, and fun. That is exactly what you get when you attend a Mathieu Blue holiday show! His soothing voice, heartfelt and fun songs, really put me in the mood for the holidays! Here's to making memories and music!

That's Adam's Call and I Stand For Entertainment!

Thursday
Dec242015

Adam's Call: The Hope of Christmas: Ann Hampton Callaway & William Schermerhorn: Originally Fresh

There are hundreds of Christmas albums for one to purchase this time of year, more or less, featuring the same handful of songs, just sung differently by each artist. Well, this year, we are in luck, there is a BRAND NEW CHRISTMAS ALBUM out featuring an array of originally fresh songs called The Hope of Christmas, with lyrics by William Schermerhorn, sung by the award winning Ann Hamtpon Callaway, featuring the music of Ann Hampton Callaway herself, Michael Feinstein, Wesley Whatley, Stephen Fox, Matthew Sklar, Milton Delugg, and Mary Ehlinger.

The Hope of Christmas is the perfect gift because it's an album you can listen to over and over again! These songs are going to be the new classics you sing with your friends and family. William has written some terrific lyrics about hope, love, loss, and the spirit of the season paired with some of the greatest composers of today and yesterday! Ann's voice seamlessly welds the music and lyrics together, bringing you a finished product that will put you in the most festive mood!

William SchermerhornAnn Hampton CallawayThe jazz-infused songs effortlessly spread a sense of calmness and peace throughout your home and allow you to just relax and reflect on the sounds of the season. A few of my favorite songs, are the title song itself, "The Hope of Christmas" (music by Ann Hampton Callaway), a terrific song about bringing peace and love to the world, not only at Christmas time, but throughout the year. I also love "On Union Street" (music by Wesley Whatley), a fun song about the joys of the start of the Christmas season and meeting up with famiy and friends. It's a great song to open the album because, from the get-go, it gets you excited about all the fun, food, and good times Christmas can bring. I also adore "My Gift of Thanks" (music by Michael Feinstein), a terrific song about being grateful. Knowning a bit about Michael, it's no wonder he would write the music to such a beautiful song as this fits right in with his own beliefs. Then there is "Christmas Isn't Christmas At All," a faster paced bluesy song about missing someone you love during this festive time.

Ann Hampton Callaway and Seth RudetskyI am so glad The Hope of Christmas is available. It's so refreshing to listen to a Christmas album filled with ORIGINAL songs. Not that I don't love the classics we've grown up with and come to love, but it's definitely time and there is room for something new! So, celebrate this new holiday season with The Hope of Christmas, a NEW ORIGINAL Christmas album! Click here to purchase on Amazon.com and Click here to purchase on iTunes!

If you missed my original interview with Ann and William, click here to read it!

That's Adam's Call and I Stand For Entertainment!

Saturday
Dec122015

Adam's Call: Melissa Errico: Sing The Silence at Joe's Pub: Back, Better Than Ever

Melissa ErricoLast month I had the pleasure of going to see Melissa Errico's concert Sing The Silence at Joe's Pub which focused Melissa's journey of getting to sing again after she suddenly lost her voice during the run of Classic Stage Company's production of Passion. Melissa had to withdraw from that production and be on complete vocal rest for 100 days, meaning no singing and no talking whatsoever!

Well, the days of Melissa Errico being silent are very over! She is back and better than ever! I was amazed at how powerful her voice was. She belted stronger and louder than she ever has! I asked her after the show if she felt her voice was stronger than before she lost it and she said, "Yes, absolutely." 

Melissa Errico in "Sing The Silence" at Joe's Pub in NYCWhile the focus of the show was on her 100 days of silence, it was actually more of a biopic piece chronicling her life. She started off the show with some family background moving towards her birth then to her childhood, Broadway, and ultimately losing her voice. Melissa's journey was heavily influenced by her grandmother and great-grandmother as well as her mom's aspirations to be a singer. Some might say, she was destined for the stage. There was a lot I could identify with in Melissa's show, especially her time growing up on Long Island and having Broadway just a car or train ride away. I learned a lot about Melissa's life and her desire to be a performer. She worked hard at it and did whatever it took to get to where she wanted to be. She was going strong and then bam, without warning, one night on stage, she lost her voice. The emotional journey from there to getting her voice back was quite a long road. It was frightening at times to think Melissa Errico would never sing again, but thankfully, that was not the case! Melissa's voice is back, stronger than before!

Melissa Errico in "Sing The Silence" at Joe's Pub in NYCMy favorite musical moments in the show were "How Lovely To Be A Woman" from Bye Bye Birdie, "The Colors of My Life" from Barnum, "People's Parties" by Joni Mitchell, "This Woman's Work" by Kate Bush, "Happiness" from Passion, "Sing The Silence" by Adam Gopnik and Scott Frankel, "Silent Partner" by Patricia Barber, and "Blackbird" by The Beatles. Melissa sounded great throughout the whole show, but these were the songs that have really stuck with me and the ones I felt really drove the story of her journey home!

It did take quite a while to get to the point where Melissa lost her voice and as this piece moves forwards in development, I hope she will re-examine it to see how she can get to that point quicker. I loved learning about her family history and her childhood, but I think that is most of what could be more condensed. As a fan of hers, I want learn about what got her to where she is today, but I want more of the Broadway chatter and then getting to the actual part that made headlines for days when Melissa lost her voice. I think with those cuts, the show would be tighter, stronger, and move more seamlessly.

Melissa Errico in "Sing The Silence" at Joe's Pub in NYCI am thrilled Melissa is no longer "singing the silence" and that everyone can once again hear her powerfully soulful voice! I can't wait to see what is next for Melissa and the growth of Sing The Silence because Melissa will be silent no more!

If you missed my interview with Melissa about this show, click here to read it!

For more on Melissa be sure to visit http://melissaerrico.com and follow her on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram!

That's Adam's Call and I Stand For Entertainment!

Friday
Dec112015

Adam's Call: Dolly Parton's "Coat of Many Colors" on NBC: Inspirational

Dolly PartonDolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors was truly a remarkable TV movie! I learned so much about Dolly's upbringing that I didn't know. It was great to see her as a little rascal, but also how she got her down home roots and inspirational sayings. Coat of Many Colors really showed why Dolly is the way she is today!

As much as this movie was about Dolly's early life, Coat of Many Colors was more about having faith and love in yourself and some higher power (in Dolly's case it was G-d) as well accepting others for who they are. Dolly's mama really instilled these values in Dolly and it just demonstrates why Dolly is so accepting of everyone. Dolly really endured some rough times growing up, but watching how she handled her adversities has made me re-think how I should handle mine. You see, that is one of the reasons I love Dolly Parton, it's because Dolly always teaches me something, even when I'm just planning to be entertained.

Alyvia Alyn Lind as "Dolly Parton" in "Coat of Many Colors", Photo Credit: Quantrell Colbert/NBC Alyvia Alyn Lind as "Dolly Parton" in "Coat of Many Colors", Photo Credit: Quantrell Colbert/NBCNow let me talk about this cast! Alyvia Alyn Lind was incredible as "Dolly!" She was so engaging and what a voice! I hope she comes to Broadway soon so she can really belt it out! The little bit I knew about Dolly as a young girl was just what I've seen through pictures and a few interviews, but what I saw in Alyvia, I felt as though she really captured the essence of Dolly.

Jennifer Nettles as "Avie Lee Parton" and Ricky Schroder as "Robert Lee Parton" in "Coat of Many Colors", Photo Credit: Quantrell Colbert/NBCRicky Schroder as "Robert Lee Parton" and Jennifer Nettles as "Avie Lee Parton" in "Coat of Many Colors", Photo Credit: Quantrell Colbert/NBC Jennifer Nettles was wonderful as Dolly's mother "Avie Lee Parton!" The intense and emotional ride Dolly's mom experienced was brought to life so powerfully by Jennifer! She had great chemistry with Alyvia and Ricky Schroder who portrayed Dolly's dad "Robert Lee Parton."

Ricky also gave a powerful performance! From the stories I have heard from Dolly in interviews, it sure seemed like Ricky was spot on with his portrayal of Dolly's dad. Dolly's dad had his own struggles and Ricky brought those struggles to life! Watching Ricky in this role, reminded me of one of my other favorite Ricky Schroder TV movies, To My Daughter with Love where Ricky stole my heart as a single dad raising his 6-year-old daugther.

Mary Lane Haskell as "Miss Moody" in "Coat of Many Colors", Photo Credit: Quantrell Colbert/NBCStella Parton as "Mrs. Corla Bass", Mary Lane Haskell as "Miss Moody", "Gerald McRaney as "Reverend Jake Owens", Alyvia Alyn Lind as "Dolly Parton", Jennifer Nettles as "Avie Lee Parton", and Ricky Schroder as "Robert Lee Parton", Photo Credit: Quantrell Colbert/NBCAnd there was Mary Lane Haskell, who played "Miss Moody," Dolly's school teacher. I have see Mary Lane perform at 54 Below here in NYC in Here She Comes Again: 54 Below Does Dolly Parton, so I was super excited to see her in Coat of Many Colors. Mary Lane was super as "Miss Moody." She effortlessly showed the strictness of school teachers in those days, but she also showed her belief in Dolly and Dolly's dreams. That belief must have meant a lot to Dolly. I know, for me, I have always remembered the teachers who encouraged me to follow my dreams or supported me in some way. I hope this featured part leads Mary Lane to more film/television roles!

Dolly Parton in "Coat of Many Colors", Photo Credit: Quantrell Colbert/NBCCoat of Many Colors was so well put together and terrifically cast/directed. I hope there will be another film chronicling Dolly's rise to stardom!

If you missed Coat of Many Colors you can watch it at NBC.com through Janaury 5, 2016!

That's Adam's Call and I Stand For Entertainment!