Josh Grodsky - The Chet Baker Songbook - 10/5/19
The Chet Baker Songbook!
Saturday, October 5, 2019 -- 8pm Performance/Doors 7pm - at Harvey Milk Center, 50 Scott St. San Francisco
A nostalgic look back at the man and his music. Featuring 17 songs from George Gershwin, Johnny Mercer, Hoagie Carmichael, and many more from the Great American Songbook and beyond. With swinging assistance from pianist Dave Austin (who actually worked with Chet), East Bay bass phenomenon Carla Kaufman. A bit of reflection on the jazz icon's troubled yet fascinating life, plus perhaps a surprise guest or two.
Chet Baker was a jazz trumpeter who started out with heartthrob looks, tried Hollywood and Heroine, shot to super stardom after going against his record label's advice and cut a singing album where his beautiful rendition of "My Funny Valentine became a bonafide hit. He had his teeth knocked out during a drug deal gone bad. He lost the ability too play or sing effectively and ended up pumping gas. Years of rehabilitation and a fighter's spirit eventually led to a comeback and the most prolific artistic period of his career. He died too soon, under a shroud of controversy that exists to this day, but he left the world with a treasury of great jazz recordings, many of which resound today. Both original compositions trumpeted and sung, from the Great American Songbook. It's from this later group "The Chet Baker Songbook" is culled. This is my "Chet Baker Songbook" a totally arbitrary collection of some of the greatest love songs ever written, plus some unexpected surprises thrown in to balance the mix. And in true cabaret tradition, we've restored some rarely-heard verses to classics from George and Ira Gershwin, Richard Rodgers and others. I'll be jazzing it up a bit, but with my lyrical baritone, returning some to a style more known as cabaret. Sans trumpet this show I call jazz-cabaret fusion; it's all a loving tribute to this damaged jazz genius who's jaunty uptempo numbers and passionate ballads still resonate today
You'll hear - Isn't It Romantic, The Nearness of You, How Long Has This Been Going On?, I Get Along Without You Very Well, Let's Get Lost, among others.
Josh Grodsky, vocals
Dave Austin, piano
Carla Kaufman, bass
Martha Crawford, guest vocalist