July 29, 2007 Glenn & Much Much More
When I invited Glenn Mehrbach to be a guest on my show, I knew it was going to be a terrific show - it was that and much, much more. Glenn is a great talent as a piano player, composer, teacher and singer. Just his playing would have been enough - but instead Glenn chose to share the spotlight with four singers - Kristin Grillo, Ellen Ciompi, Sharon Szymanski and Deborah Klinger. His son, Lennon, came along for the fun and hopefully will join in the singing next time.
Hailing from NY, Glenn found his way to LA, where he performed and wrote for many years and would annually make the return trek to NYC to perform at the Olgonquin Hotel. He eventually made his way to the Carrboro/Chapel Hill area where he continues to perform and also raise, with his wife Deborah Klinger, his son Lennon. Glenn continues to perform all types of music in his capacity as Musical Director at the Unitarian Universalist Community Church of Chapel Hill and Director of the Chorale Society of Duke University; and as a pianist playing all types of music in the greater Triangle area of North Carolina. We are all enhanced by his gifts and talents.
One of the singers Glenn invited to join him in the WCOM radio studio was Kristin Grillo. Kristin is a recent graduate of Duke University and is now headed up to the Boston area, where she will attend the prestigious Berklee College of Music, where she will continue her study of voice. She has a beautiful voice and Glenn assigned her some great jazz standards to perform. These included - What's It Like Inside Your Head?, It Might As Well Be Spring, On the Sunny Side of the Street, Time after Time, and Spring is Here. I wish Kristin well and fully expect she is someone we will be hearing more from. Hopefully she will always be able to find her way back home to NC, even if just for visits - but I wish her the best as she starts her journey up North.
Glenn also invited Ellen Ciompi to join us. Ellen lives in Durham and performs as a singer with Leon Jordan & His Continentals - a Raleigh-based 14-member "big band". Ellen can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. She performed a diverse set of songs, including Something's Coming, You Can't Say No to a Soldier, One More Minute, and Fun to be Perfect. Her version of One More Minute, a "weird" Al Yankovic song, was performed with great emotion, gusto and humor. I also enjoyed her interpretation of Fun to be Perfect, sung with great sarcasm, and was originally recorded by The Four Bitchin' Babes. I look forward to catching Ellen with Leon Jordan's Big Band.
Sharon Szymanski is a highly successful singer and voice teacher and runs a voice school in the Chapel Hill area. Sharon has a powerful voice that is most comfortable performing opera. However, she loves all music and enjoys performing songs of many genres. On my show, Sharon performed A Route to the Sky, Amor, Early in the Morning, and Summertime. Sharon can be reached at Szymanski Studios in Chapel Hill, NC at 919-960-6898, www.szymanskistudios.com.
Also joining us was Deborah Klinger, who is a singer and improv theatre performer. She performs with the improv troup, called inDecision Theater - If You're Looking For Improv, We're iT! They perform in the Triangle Area. Deborah performed the following songs - Ya Don't Like Baseball, in duet with Glenn; A Married Man, with Glenn singing his thoughts on the ups and downs of married life and joined by all the singers, and LJKM, a song written for and performed for Deborah and Glenn's son, Lennon.
Interspersed in the evenings wonderfully diverse music, I played from two CDs. One featured the singing of Andrea Marcovicci, who Glenn performed with for many years. I also played Jen Zias, performing Glenn's song, Wild Nights!, from her CD Take Me with You.
As always, I had a wonderful evening and was glad to share such great music. Please join me every Sunday night from 7:00 - 9:00 EST in the WCOM radio studio, or catch me on the dial in the Carrboro, NC area at 103.5 FM (low power) or anywhere in the world by going to the web at www.communityradio.coop. My show always features the music of NC jazz musicians and much, much more.
Emma and Emily dropped by the WCOM studio during my show to enjoy the music.