Sunday, May 9, 2010


Yesterday, fours days after its release, I purchased "One Night Only Only - Barbra Streisand and Quartet at the Village Vanguard." I typically purchase her music and videos on the day they are released, but this week I procrastinated.

While Fettit was away playing his organ for the masses, I snuck off to Target and bought the DVD/CD combination, came home and cued it up for viewing later that evening, and once the sun went down, and it was apparent our Arizona Diamondbacks were going to lose against Milwaukee, I switched over to the concert.

At 67 years old, Barbra Streisand's voice is still as captivating as ever and she continues her reign as the preeminent interpreter of the great American songbook. In the case of this concert, the 123 lucky people in attendance (and now everyone else,) were able to experience her in an intimate setting, reminiscent of her beginnings in the small clubs of New York's Greenwich Village.

This private concert was to kick off the release of her last CD "Love is the Answer" - the jazz inspired work of art that surprisingly debuted at number 1 on the charts, making her the only artist to have a number one album in five decades (breaking her own record).

Barbra puts her stamp on several standards: In The Wee Small Hours Of The Morning, Nobody’s Heart (Belongs To Me), Make Someone Happy, My Funny Valentine
Bewitched, Bothered And Bewildered, and stripped down versions of two of her most well known songs, Evergreen and The Way We Were.

One of my favorite moments in the concert came near the end, after finishing her classic "Evergreen," she leaves the stage and when she returns she realizes that she walked off a song too early. Known for her perfection to detail and production, and releasing carefully controlled product, her realization (however brief) is priceless - a brief glimpse into a human Streisand.

Sarah Jessica Parker sits at the front table with Barbra's husband, James Brolin, and is clearly mesmerised throughout. As Babs finishes her final song, "The Way We Were," she is visibly moved and is seen wiping tears from her face - a reaction I can relate to from the four times I have seen her, whether from the rafters in Detroit's Palace in 1994 or 30 feet from the stage here in Phoenix in November 2006.

Nearly 50 years after becoming an international sensation, Barbra Streisand's connection to the lyrics and emotions of a song remain unequalled. She still touches a special place in my heart and getting to experience this exclusive, unplugged performance was a pleasure to watch from beginning to end.

1 comment:

Sparroweye said...

I agree. There is no one else like her nor ever will be.