Andy Cohen sees Babs in concert.
Wow I haven't blogged in four days. How'd THAT happen? And before I get into nonsense, what did you think of Rachel's management style last night? And are you ready for a really upsetting argument between Jeff and Ryan tonight on Flipping Out?
It was an eventful weekend. Friday night I went with friends to the Grill at the new Standard Hotel in the Meatpacking District. Wowza — it is a phenominally sceney scene made up up scenesters and the people who love them. I don't know what any of that means but it was packed and fun and the food was good.
Saturday I ran around town like a fool in heat. There was a loud buzz around my gayborhood because Barbra Streisand was performing at the Village Vanguard in an exclusive gig for 75 die-hard contest winners and 30 or so more FOBs. I am not a personal FOB but I am a Fof-a-FOB and a Fan-OB and I was priveleged and lucky and amazed to have gotten a spot inside that tiny club.
And so at 8 p.m., we were essentially jammed in like sardines with the Clintons (Chelsea too!) behind me and Kidman in front and all our knees were touching and everyone was Kumbaya cuz it was Big and it was Babs.
And I mean it was only 120 people in the whole joint but it was ELECTRIC. Everybody applauded when Bill and Hillary walked in and then the owner of the Vanguard took the stage, and she's an NYC broad in her 70s who knows her way around the block; she had everybody in stitches talking about the club and about this waiter who'd convinced her to let a girl singer try out. And then the waiter gets up and he's now an alta cocker (old person) too. And this man says Miles Davis didn't wanna let Babs sing, but she did and then it was history. And her manager (same one she's had all her life — which says all you need to know about her) got up and told some stories and out she came.
"I can't get stage fright cuz there's barely a stage," is one of the first things she said in her pre-singing, Fanny Brice-y patter. She was pretty damn funny and warm and inviting and inclusive. And then she opened her mouth to sing.
It's an instrument and it is flawless. And the night was 90 minutes of purity: just her voice into a mic with no help from any millenial-JLo-can-sing-enhancement devices, the way it's meant to be. I was covered in goosebums. It was all about her stuff from her early years I'd never heard and many standards ("Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered") and big hits ("Evergreen"/"The Way We Were"). And among the FOBs were even more people who were connected to what she was singing (like the Bergmans, who wrote "The Way We Were" among others).
The whole thing was magic and I think everybody held their breath for 90 minutes. The place was floating. When I left I thought of strangling all those idiots who call themselves singers and lip synch around a stage stealing our money. And then I got a wee bit pissed at Whitney for sitting in a house for 10 years sprinkling blow into joints. This voice is a gift and Streisand at 68 is beyond the beyond.
Earlier in the summer, perhaps in my cups, I'd promised my friend's son that one day I'd introduce him to Megan Fox. So guess who was hosting Saturday Night Live about two hours after Babs left the stage? From the Vanguard I shlepped to pick up my friend's son and his buddies, all mega fans of Megan Fox, to see what we could come up with.
The good news for me was that U2 was the musical act and I went from Barbra to Bono in one night. They sang four songs ("With or Without You" after the show was over) and I was INTO IT. I wasn't hugely into the new album, but had just downloaded two remixes ("Magnificent" is phenom) that day and by the end of the night I was back to give it a big second go. The even better news was that I managed to intro the boys to the Foxiest of the Foxes in the freight elevator after the show, so everybody got what they wanted.
Then it was Yom Kippur. And now it is now. Have a great day!