This morning I am warmed by the memory of Monday night. The SGA Songwriters Circle was at the Red Lion and the room was packed. Kirsten Thein was our host.
Skip Brevis, our usual MC, was in Los Angeles. One of the young artists that he and his writing partner, Claudia Brevis, produced and managed has just signed with Disney. (Claudia is also Skip’s partner in life and mother of two very handsome young men.)
The Circle was fast and exciting, but a highlight was Janelle Tedesco, who sang one of her husband's songs, and brought people to tears. Janelle is an accomplished actress and musical theatre veteran. She did the national tours of The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas starring Ann-Margret and The Producers.
Also making this night special was the participation of Steve Addabbo, a Grammy-nominated producer, engineer, songwriter and performer who is himself a music industry legend. In October 1988, Steve opened a studio on Shelter Island, two hours east of NYC. Steve had just had a major success with Suzanne Vega's "Solitude Standing" album and Shawn Colvin had just been signed to Columbia records.
Steve and the studio began working on Colvin's debut album, "Steady On" (a Grammy Winner), Eric Andersen's classic, "Ghosts Upon the Road" and other major label and indy projects. The studio, now located in the city, is in its 23rd year of operation and continues to be a vital part of the New York recording scene.
Steve has also produced Olivia Newton John, Bo Diddley, the New York Dolls, Gov’t Mule and many other acts. In another interesting note, Suzanne Vega has been referred to as the "Mother of the MP3" as it was a recording of her voice on Tom’s Diner that was used to test Karlheinz Brandenburg's compression algorithm. Steve recorded the acapella version of Tom's Diner up at Bearsville Studios in January, 1987. It was a joy to have him grace our stage with his songs.
John Nickles, a new SGA Pro-Shop member, sat in for a number—fresh from his audition for the TV show, The Voice.
Galia Arad was brilliant and sang her Elvis Costello song (it is about him, not by him). It always kills me. People cannot get enough of her. She has announced that she will be living in Ireland for a year. By the way, an artist living in Ireland pays no income tax! She will be touring in Europe. Before she goes she will be doing a goodby tour in the U.S.
Galia has a large fan base in the UK, and it will be exciting for her to have this experience. I’m looking forward for her to share it with all of us.
Bruce Gordon, our studio bass and guitar player, sang a song that had us on the floor— “Jesus Stole My Baby” — a grand night for singing.
Bleecker Street has so much history. Every time I walk down that street I think of all the singer-songwriters that came before— Dylan, Peter, Paul and Mary (Mary's family lived on Bleecker Street...they were way cool), John Sebastian, (his mother, Jane, lived in a mews must behind Washington Square Park and worked at Carnegie Hall; his father was also a musician, a internationally known harmonica player, who played with major symphonies around the world. It was the kind of family I dreamed about—creative and excepting.)
Greenwich Village still holds the magic and it is catching. Come hang with us next time.