Silly thought came to mind while having dinner tonight, mainly because the local CalTort plays music from the 70’s and 80’s. Kit sits there and says, for nearly every song, “Ye gods, I haven’t heard this one in forever.” Half the time I have to ask him who it is, because they play some pretty awesomely obscure stuff.
But it got me thinking: There are people who I would have loved to see perform, but they’re either honest-to-goodness retired (as opposed to Billy Joel retired – oops, new tour, gotta pay for rehab*) or passed away. Who are they? And why would I have loved to see them live?
Victor Borge: First. Very first. I grew up watching his comedy and virtuosity. He had such a way with languages – his own and any other – and I can quote his “Phonetic Punctuation” skit almost verbatim. He performed with Robert Merrill, Marilyn Mulvey, Dean Martin, Leonid Hambro, Sahan Arzruni, and Rowlf the Dog. His 1989 version of Clair de Lune is the first I ever heard, still my very favorite. Borge introduced me to classical music and opera, made it approachable, and made it fun. I was in London when I got the news that he had died, and he is the only performer that I ever truly mourned.
Édith Piaf: A popular French singer who discovered one of my other current favorites (Charles Aznavour). She had a trill, a depth, and a heartache to her voice that one can hear even through the tinny recordings of her early career. Her life was hard from the start and she never let it get easier for herself; her songs expressed it. To see her live would have been an experience.
Ray Charles: The man was a performer to the bone. I love his music, and whenever I saw video of his performances, he looked like he was enjoying the hell out of himself. That makes a great show I would have loved to see.
Liberace: Mainly because I’ve heard he was a fantastic pianist, and a stunning performer.
Cab Calloway: Because “Minnie the Moocher” live would have been an absolute thrill.
There are more, but it’s after midnight and Someone just reminded me it’s time to wash up… 🙂
So who would you have loved to see live? And why?
*Love Billy Joel’s music, but let’s call a spade a spade. 🙂