By Amy Kathleen Miller
On Sunday, I went to the Salt Lake City Jazz Festival, from 1 p.m. to late at night. They had professional jazz singers and instrumentalists come from all over the country to perform at the festival.
As a vocalist myself who loves to sing jazzy songs, my favorite singer was Deana Martin, Dean Martin’s daughter. I thought she was the best because she had excellent stage presence. She was funny, a great singer, she showed a lot of poise. I just can’t say enough good things about her.
Being a singer myself, I learned a few things just by watching her. I need to steal the show like she does. But I have really never had a whole performance where it was just me. I usually sang for someone at weddings, funerals, church, but I’ve not had a performance where it was just about my showmanship abilities. That’s a dream of mine.
I watched the other singers perform and gobbled up what they showed in their technique to teach me about good showmanship. I watched their stage presence. I wondered to myself, “Can I do that?” Can I just steal the show like that and make it a moment where you don’t want it to end? Deana even had moments where she would walk over to a cocktail glass to take a drink of water and she would say, “Is it all right that I have a sippy-poo?” Ahhhh, she was good!
There is often one issue about live concerts like that with me, and that’s the volume from the speakers. I have very sensitive ears, and it doesn’t help when I go along to shows and John tries to sit as close as he can to the stage so he can shoot photos, and I sometimes feel the need to plug my ears — not because I’m not enjoying the music, but just because of the volume. Maybe I need to take along something to muffle it a bit.
Maybe it runs in my family. I have a brother who has a problem with ringing ears and it is a very uncomfortable thing for him. The volume for Deana Martin’s show wasn’t bad, it was softer, but the Tower of Power show was one where I had to protect my ears. I did find myself dancing along to their music, though, and John enjoyed watching me dancing to it. They are very fun to watch.
All in all, it was an enjoyable day. I’m not used to all-day festivals like that, so I was really tired of sitting as the day went on. I won’t forget what I picked up there when it comes to great showmanship, and I hope to be able to perform like that someday — a concert where I can entertain the way I would like to, with no restrictions. Yeah, that’s a dream of mine.
Editor’s Note: “Amy’s Angle” is a weekly Wednesday feature in this blog.
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