Postmodern Jukebox makes beautiful music.
PMJ is a rotating group of musicians, producing covers of pop songs in the styles of jazz, ragtime and swing. Channel Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald, Nina Simone.
Wednesday night I took in the show at Best Buy Theatre in NYC.
Scott Bradlee, the creator of Postmodern Jukebox, hatched the idea in the basement of his Astoria home.
PMJ is a genuinely entertaining group. The vocals are exceptional, laced with humor and sass.
Wednesday night, they performed a 2 hour show to an enthusiastic, sold-out audience.
Postmodern Jukebox rearranged and performed such mega hits as Katy Perry’s, Roar, Britney Spear’s, Womanizer, Magic!, Rude, Radiohead’s, Creep. Ushers, I Don’t Mind, Guns N’ Roses, Sweet Child O’ Mine, Maroon 5, Maps, Blackstreet’s, No Diggity, Lady GaGa, Bad Romance, Shake It Off by Taylor Swift laced with a heavy Motown vibe and Hozier, Take Me To Church.
Paired with the outstanding vocals and arrangements, the concert featured, as an added treat, talented tapper, Sarah Reich.
Part of the experience is identifying each song after hearing just a few bars. It’s so much fun to realize that a great sounding jazz standard is actually The Darkness’, I Believe In A Thing Called Love.
Though Bradlee is clearly the leader, pounding the ivory and even performing a spontaneous instrumental mash-up of Queen, Super Mario, Taylor Swift and The Beastie Boys (suggestions shouted out from the audience), he lets the spotlight shine on his musical mates.
The ever revolving roster of incredibly talented vocalists Wednesday night included, Ariana Savalas, Morgan James, Maiya Sykes (The Voice contestant), Annie Goodchild, Von Smith and Robyn Adele Anderson.
In early September 2014, Bradlee uploaded a 1940’s jazz interpretation of Meghan Trainor’s, All About That Bass. The video, featuring Kate Davis, has received 12 million hits to date. The live performance brought the house down.
Beyond the amazing voices, talented drummer and horn section as well as the charming singing MC, Wilkie Ferguson, I fell in love with the insanely high energy tambourine guy, Tim Kubart.
I kept thinking I had seen the ‘tambourine guy’ somewhere before and then it dawned on me. He had embodied Vance, Jason Sudeikis’ overzealous backup dancer on SNL’s recurring sketch, What’s Up with That?”
PMJ has no age limitations. Their show spans generations and is a delightful way to spend an evening.
By the way, due to overwhelming demand, a second show has been added on May 12th.
Don’t, Shake It Off…get up and get down with Postmodern Jukebox.
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