I've known Shelly Goldstein for a long while. She's a joy of a person. Just the kind of person who wants everyone in the known universe to be happy. And probably the unknown universe, too. You know the type. That was plenty enough for me. That she went to Northwestern University, too, was just a bonus.
It happened that she also is wildly talented. A terrific writer of sitcoms and special events (she wrote the recent stage tribute to Hugh Jackman, for instance) and also writes screenplays. So, that was swell, too.
Only about 10 years ago did I discover that she sang, too. Boy, did she sing. A powerhouse of a vocalist. It just wasn't something she ever talked about much or did, as she pursued her other careers. She had always sung, and even performed earlier in her life. But at one point in recent years she sort of decided to get back to the singing she loved so much, and put together a cabaret act and now performs all over -- including England. (It helps that her husband, the talented writer-director Brendan Foley, is Irish and lives there. It makes finding accommodations so much easier.)
Lucky us in Los Angeles, she's going do do her cabaret show in Hollywood at the Catalina Jazz Club on Tuesday, February 19th. Squeezed in between Valentine's Day and Washington's Birthday. I've seen her perform many times, and -- not surprisingly -- she's great. She has various shows she switches between, and the one on Friday is particularly near and dear her heart -- "One Fine Day: Shelly Goldstein's Loving Tribute to the Ladies Who Changed Music Forever in the '60s and Early '70s." (You should know that "groovy" is one of Shelly's favorite words...)
Here's the thing -- what makes Shelly Goldstein's cabaret show so terrific isn't just what a dynamo singer she is, or her vibrant choice of songs, but rather...because as I mentioned before, she's a writer. And a comedy writer. And a very good, smart comedy writer. So, she doesn't just stand up and say, "For my next number..." She actually has written a wonderful act herself, tailored to her many talents, so you get an actual entertaining show, not something you could just as easily listen to as a DVD. You get a fun evening of theater.
It's not just terrific music, but very funny, as well. Not just what she says, but Shelly also writes some wonderfully funny, extremely clever parodies. Here's an example, from her show "Songs for Lovers,and Those They've Dumped." It's a parody of "16 Going on 17" about her woeful love life growing up --
Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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