“Shecky Greene told me many years ago, ‘Don’t be so slick. You’ve got be be human’,” said Marilyn Maye after she and Michael Feinstein fumbled a few words in their opening medley at Feinsteins at the Regency last night.
Already, I had died and gone to show biz heaven!
Someone was a few feet away from me, quoting Shecky Greene!
And besides, the fumbling was minor, and pretty adorable anyway, since these two are pros who go with the moment and make everything work thanks to sheer talent plus years of bizzy knowhow.
Their “Swingin’ The Night Away” act is a union of Maye, an octogenarian belter/stylist who’s become the cabaret queen of New York, and Feinstein, who’s silky voiced, dewy eyed, and always witty on the spot.
Maye scores with sharp, jazzy renditions of standards (She really swings on “On The Street Where You Live,” Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy,” and “Take Five”), adept at both optimism and poignancy.
And Feinstein is boyish and sincere on “The Way We Were” and “Somewhere”, and can also go for sheer zest (“Hooray For Hollywood”) and rockin’ boogie woogie rhythms.
They harmonize beautifully, rip into marvy medleys, and Feinstein even does requests.
At one point, Maye begged Feinstein to pretend he’s her brother so she wouldn’t feel old enough to be his mom, and that was no leap at all.
These two are so bonded they come off like conjoined twins.
Next up for them: A boogie woogie Side Show?
With Shecky Greene as the ringleader?