What follows is an email I immediately wrote in a flurry of enthusiasm to a mutual fan of singer Kurt Reichenbach after seeing him in performance last night at L.A.s Gardenia. Let's call him...
Mister First Nighter here. Just back from seeing Kurt at his sophomore performance, at the Gardenia.
Like you, until now I have only had his brilliant CD, "The Night Was Blue" to go on, and I've wondered a bit could he offer up an equally winning "live" analogue to his (digital) studio recording. (Slightly awkward wordplay there.) The answer is an emphatic YES. Much to my delight, he is no one shot wonder. Hard to believe that this is only his second outing as a "live"performer. He has gone from newcomer to seeming seasoned vet almost overnight. A full house by the way. Songs he performed that were not on the CD included a blistering up-tempo "I'm All Smiles," "All the Things You Are," "I Thought About You," and Roger Schore's lyricization of Billy Strayhorn's "Bittersweet."
Patter between songs was brief and judicious and added to the overall effectiveness of the presentation. (Mein Got!, I'm beginning to sound like an old Variety reviewer! Just call me Sime.)
Joining Kurt on three songs was his brother, the fine trombonist Bill Reichenbach, i.e. The Brothers Reichenbach. Although Kurt was working with only piano (the fine Jim Cox), Bill did not serve as a relief from a sameness (there wasn't any), but was merely a fine addition to the proceedings. (Variety-ese again.) Thanks for the much-appreciated boost you have given to Kurt with your kind communiques. I only "met" him around the same time as you did, and I think we are amongst the first few to have jumped on his bandwagon. He really did us up proud tonight. Not to mention himself.