“Tales of the Traveling Jewbadour”: Singer/songwriter/pianist Gary Negbaur
By: Linda Amiel Burns
Gary Negbaur performed an evening of songs of Jewish-American composers at The Metropolitan Room for two nights on October 10 & 17 calling his show “Tales of the Traveling Jewbadour.” This included works of the likes of Gershwin, Berlin, Billy Joel, Frank Loesser, Harold Arlen and five of his own original songs.
Gary entered in a funky tailcoat and sat down at the piano and immediately took off his bowtie to get comfortable and that put his audience at ease. He opened with a live version of “Cabaret” (Kander & Ebb) accompanied by DomRi hards on bass. Gary is an accomplished pianist and is able to play in a variety of styles. Included in the program was “Jailhouse Rock” (Lieber & Stoller) showing his love of Rock & Roll, the standard “As Time Goes By” (Herman Hupfeld) and one of the highlights was an innovative Latin Jazz instrumental arrangement of “Sunrise Sunset” (Harnick & Bock). His patter was amusing as he told what it was like to travel the world for his work, even playing on cruise ships for a while. This introduced a wonderful rendition of “Sit Down, You're Rockin' the Boat” (Loesser) and a weather medley of “Blue Skies & “Stormy Weather” (Berlin/Koehler & Arlen).
Yvette Negbaur, Gary's wife, came on stage to sing “Make Some Mistakes With Me” a song he wrote for a musical performed at the Fringe Festival called Librarians in Love. Another of his originals was “”Eat at Home” and the very humorous “Passover in Kansas City” with Yvette, who has a lovely voice. They closed with another original “A River Away” talking about the time they decided to move in together, she didn't want to leave the city to move to Queens.
What Jewish mother wants to hear from her son after he graduates from Harvard University (Magna Cum Laude) that he wants to become a singer songwriter? Well, the die must have been cast early as Gary is from a musical family, his mother a piano teacher and brother and wife are singers. Even his mother-in-law, Shelli Kwiat, is a concert pianist. Gary went on to study at the Berkley College of Music (where he had a merit scholarship). His interactive wine-tasting musical called Wine Lovers (co-written with Michael Green and Travis Kramer) will be opening at The Triad in December, 2007.
Gary Negbaur is a triple threat performer and has a great musical future ahead of him. There are not many entertainers today who compose both music & lyrics, play the piano masterfully and sing. Gary is quoted as saying that “this show is a composer's journey to his heritage and his heart.” That says it all!
Linda Amiel Burns
Founded and Directs The Singing Experience, popular cabaret and musical theater performance workshops since 1977, featured on CBS Sunday Morning with Charles Osgood. Linda has written, booked and directed over 400 cabaret acts, produces and stars in The Singing Experience Cable TV Show on MNN and RCN, and is President Of The New York Sheet Music Society ( www.NYSMS.org .) Website: www.SingingExperience.com
E-mail: SingLAB@aol.com Tel: 212 315-3500
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