WFM Listening Room Opens in NYC
A Howling Success!
Pardon me if I howl a trifle, but occasionally things go even better than one dreams. The Watchfire Music Listening Room debuted this past week to a sold out audience and by the end of the evening clearly became a dream defined.
Here is an idea whose time has truly come. A place where one could come and spend an evening in intimate and elegant surroundings, Jenkins House Concerts just off of Central Park on the West Side of Manhattan, and do little else than simply listen to great “live” music in an un-mic’d setting.
Here was music at its natural best, parlor performed by two multi-talented ladies. The audience was a wild mix of melting-pot New Yorkers – young and old, professionals and fans, black and white, and all went home full of good food and rich blessings – and only for a $15 ticket. Such a deal!
The evening kicked off with singer-songwriter, Rebecca Minor, at the grand piano, inspiring us with four terrific new songs personally penned and sung with delightful conviction. If this is beginning to sound like a review, so be it, though not exactly one from a bipartisan critic, admittedly.
Rebecca is a beautiful gal in her late twenties with a huge future talent that definitely bears watching and listening to. Word has it that she will soon be selling her sacred songs on none other than the Watchfire Music Digital Sheet Music site. Stay tuned for a rich treasure trove of contemporary and most accessible solos for your church events.
After a short intermission of delicious finger food and drink, we reconvened in anticipation of Julia Wade, our evening’s headliner. Ms Wade did not disappoint. Instead, she sang, she soared, she enlightened us with her gifted instrument, deep commitment to her musical text and great natural beauty. Perhaps I’m a bit prejudiced here, but it was one of her finest moments witnessed over the past 15 years.
Transitioning from a 3 domed 4000 seat church in Boston where she has performed for the past 5 years weekly to an intimate parlor setting requires tremendous adjustment of style, but Ms Wade pulled this off with aplomb. In this laboratory setting we had the rare opportunity as an audience to visit and watch the development of this superb vocalist’s new CD, entitled Every Day.
The one gaff of the evening, provided by Ms Wade, came early in her set, in fact, in the second line of her first song as she “went up” and never came down. Forgetting the words of her song, she struggled on in delicate mumblings for two lines finally giving up and stopping.
She then calmly requested the soundman to start the track over. The audience sat patiently, albeit a bit nervously for her, as she regrouped and began again. We had the opportunity to see how a professional gathers her focus, taking it to a much higher caliber and simply begins again leaving the difficulties of the moment behind and moving assuredly on.
In an odd way, it was one of the highlights of the evening. In my 40 years of show biz I’ve seen this happen many times. I’ve seen singers forget lines, go up and never recover. I’ve seen these kinds of moments multiply and become epidemic, destroying the continuity of the act, but here was a moment that actually helped both singer and audience.
We had the opportunity to watch a human being falter and then recover in dramatic proportion. She then went on to deliver a breathtaking performance of powerful commitment. This lady has both the instrument and the depth of performance that moves to greatness. She brings a fresh original sense and sound to Inspirational music that is both classic and accessible, a true classical crossover talent along the lines of a Josh Grobin or a Andrea Bocelli.
She will headline two more evenings with two different opening acts in the same venue Thursdays, September 16 and October 7 at 7:30. She’ll be joined first by newcomer, singer-songwriter Megan Neale and then by Watchfire Artist and multi-gifted Margaret Dorn in October.
Don’t miss this opportunity to be part of something new, something different and something truly special.
Bring your friends, bring your ears, bring your appetites.
Get ready to howl.
For more inspirational music, thoughts and ideas from Peter Link,
please visit Watchfire Music.