Singer, Actress, Cabaret Entertainer
This is about the 30th concert I have done for Lainie in a period of about 3 years. I am very flattered that whenever she is in the New York area, she prefers to use my services as her sound engineer. Usually, Lainie's appearances are with a trio. Leading the band is Eddie Caccavale, her drummer and musical director. Eddie has either played with everybody in the music business, or has played with somebody who has. Playing bass was Jon Burr, an incredible musician. On piano was Bob Kaye, who appears to be able to play anything instantly, in any style you want. It's an extraordinary experience to work with such talented musicians.
I miked the drums with an AKG D-112 on kick, a Shure SM-57 on snare, and an AKG C-391 for an overhead. Jon (bass) has a wonderful clip-on mike that he brings to every gig. We taped an AKG C-414 inside the piano so that the lid could be closed. It was a relatively small stage, and with the lid up, the piano sound overwhelmed Lainie.
We used 2 Galaxy hot-spot monitors for piano and drums, a pair of JBL MR-802 wedges in front of Lainie, and a pair of Tannoy speakers for side-fills. I was mixing house and monitors from an Allen-Heath GL-3 on the side of the stage. As usual with Lainie, I split her gold plated Shure SM-58 into 2 channels on the board; one for front of house, and the other just for her monitors.
Lainie likes to rehearse before each show, so I usually work my sound check into her rehearsal. She will generally take between 5 and 15 minutes to get the sound of her voice the way she wants it in the monitors. Sound check / rehearsal ran from 4:00 PM to about 6:30 PM. The show was scheduled to begin at 10:00 PM.
The turnout at the country club was fairly good. They filled the room with tables, and it looked like every table was full. By the time 10:00 rolled around, everyone had already finished dinner and dessert, and they were ready for the show.
If you say nothing else about Lainie, you must admit that she is a striking presence in any room, and puts on a wonderful show. She is charming, endearing, bawdy, funny, and sincere. It also doesn't hurt that she has one of the best singing voices around.
Being in my mid-40's (don't tell anyone), I was probably among the youngest people there. The audience generally ranged in age from their 50's to their 70's, probably with a couple of 80's and 90's thrown in. It didn't matter - everyone seemed to enjoy themselves very much.
She sang songs made popular by such artists as Sophie Tucker and Ethel Merman, as well as songs written by Artie Butler and George Gershwin. This type of music is not what I would necessarily go out and buy, but Lainie has a way of interpreting these classics and making them wonderful.
She received rousing applause at the end of each number, and joined the audience for coffee and autographs after the show. Everyone went home smiling.
If you enjoy seeing a concert where the performer pours her guts into the show, see Lainie live. If you like her style of music and her sweet sultry voice, check out some of Lainie's recordings.
Visit Lainie's own web site at www.lainiekazan.com!
I have also worked with Lainie at such diverse venues as:
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