I witnessed the true meaning of talent tonight when I attended my first ever full-length Marilyn Maye show, "Marilyn By Request" at The Metropolitan Room in NYC, accompanied by the one and only Billy Stritch on piano, Ted Hubbard on bass, and Warren Odze on drums and percussion. To ring in the New Year, Marilyn is asking fans to submit the songs they want to hear when making a reservation for the show, which means each audience will see a slightly different set. I was thrilled with the song choices at my show. From jazz to showtunes, Marilyn delighted attendees with one crowd pleaser after another.
From the minute Marilyn stepped on stage, greatness began. Marilyn enthralled the audience for a full 90 minutes with her powerful voice and vibrant personality. Throughout the evening, I was constantly in awe of Marilyn. When Marilyn belted, the crowd cheered that much more and luckily for us, she belted a lot! Marilyn knows how to hit all the right notes. With Billy Stritch leading the band, Marilyn soared that much higher.
I was introduced to the songbook of Marilyn Maye and I loved every moment of it. My favorite songs were "It's The Most Unusual Day" (with some new lyrics written by Marilyn), "Golden Rainbow" (a great song about dreams coming true), "I Love Being Here With You," "Get Happy," "Rainbow Medley: 'Look To The Rainbow,' 'Over The Rainbow,' 'Make Me A Rainbow,' and 'Rainbow Connection,'" "If I Were A Bell" (from "Guys and Dolls"), "Lazy Afternoon," "Goodbye Country Boy," "Paradise Cafe," "Guess Who I Saw Today," "New York Medley: 'New York, New York,' and 'New York State of Mind,' as well as "The Best of Times"/"It's Today."
Intermixed between songs Marilyn shared some stories with the audience. I loved learning the history behind a few of the songs. My favorite story was when Marilyn sang "I Won't Send Roses" by Jerry Herman from Mack and Mabel. This song is normally sung by a man, but Marilyn wanted to sing it, so she called Mr. Herman to ask him if a woman has ever sang that song. After a long pause, he told her no, but asked her how it sounded. She said great and the rest is Marilyn music history.
I have seen many singers over the years and I can easily say there is no one else like Marilyn Maye. I feel so lucky that I was able to attend this show and I look forward to my next full length Marilyn Maye show. "Marilyn By Request" plays The Metropolitan Room (34 West 22nd Street, between 5th & 6th Avenue) for only three more show: this Saturday (January 5), Sunday (January 6), and Wednesday (January 9). Click here for tickets and check out this video montage below (credit: YouTube user MagdaCorrespondent).