“Eddie Bruce to perform Anthony Newley Songbook At The Met Room 11/1, 11/22″
“Eddie Bruce brings his popular tribute show to Anthony Newley to the Metropolitan Room in New York on two Mondays in November – the 1st and 22nd at 7 p.m. Entitled “Once in a Lifetime … The Anthony Newley Songbook”, he performs with the “remarkable” Tom Adams Trio and presents a rare and most refreshing revisit of some of the music made popular by Newley.
Reviewed after his Feinstein’s appearance on September 26th, Harold Sanditen raves about Bruce in CabaretScenes. He writes about his showmanship saying … “Eddie Bruce has great talent for entertaining his audience. He’s a natural ….. has a beautiful voice and his jazz band, the Tom Adams Trio, is truly remarkable.” And when he talks about the selection of Newley music, he says, “I’ve been an Anthony Newley fan my whole life ….. The music is infectious … Eddie sings … beautifully. It’s almost impossible to keep from tapping your toes or moving to the music. All you had to do was look around the room to see the proof of this.”
Bruce presents the essence of Anthony Newley in his show featuring the hits as well as his dramatic, Broadway soul-searching music. This music has always touched the popular singer and performer Eddie Bruce, as did the life of the English songwriter, singer and actor, Anthony Newley who had originally penned them in collaboration with Leslie Bricusse. The show includes such light-hearted songs as “On a Wonderful Day like Today” (from “The Roar of the Greasepaint, The Smell of The Crowd”) and “Candy Man” (From “Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory”). Bruce also sings songs that come from the more pensive side of Newley like “What Kind of Fool Am I?” and “Once in a Lifetime” (both from “Stop the World I Want to Get Off.”)
Always fascinated by Newley, Bruce believes “Tony,” as he affectionately refers to him, was both under-appreciated and underrated as a songwriter. “There really is no one like Tony,” said Bruce. “He had a very unique, distinct style, an over-the-top approach to performing his songs.” During his show Bruce shares anecdotes about Newley like this one. “Most people don’t realize the influence he had on other performers like David Bowie who idolized Newley. In fact, David Bowie once had the opportunity to meet Anthony Newley, but he got so nervous to be in his presence, he actually declined.”
For Eddie Bruce, when he performs his interpretation of Tony Bennett’s music, he’s singing music that everyone knows. When he sings Newley’s music, it’s often music his audiences forgot but loved or didn’t even realize Newley had written in the first place. One example is the classic ballad, “Feeling Good.” Bruce continues, “Michael Buble made it famous again – so popular that the kids on American Idol sing it, they just don’t know much about its composer.”
Bruce has become practically an expert on Newley, recalling his swingin’ 60′s style. He even spent time reviewing Newley’s archives, wearing white gloves as instructed at Boston University’s Special Collections Library as he looked through his materials “I expected to find a few boxes of music… Instead, I found over 90 boxes filled with personal correspondence, handwritten performance notes and a treasure trove of personal memorabilia.” Being amongst Newley’s personal things was an experience he’ll never forget. He added, “I remember seeing Anthony Newley perform on television. It made such an impression on me when I saw him on the Mike Douglas Show, Merv Griffin Show, and even on the old Hollywood Palace where he was the host.”
Perhaps it was the way Newley acted that impacted him the most. “I was always fascinated by ‘The Joker,’ the poor laughing fool, and his role of Little Chap in ‘Stop the World I Want to Get Off.’ There was that special something about the way he sang that always got to me. His music was equally unique but he would complain because Sammy Davis, Jr. and Tony Bennett could do what he couldn’t … sell a million copies overnight of his music! And, speaking of Sammy Davis, he had a relationship with Tony [Newley] that was like being on a roller coaster. For a long time, they were the best of friends but the relationship suffered and they stopped speaking, even though Tony tried, even up until Sammy’s death.”
A frequent performer in New York and Philadelphia, Eddie Bruce is proud to have broken box office records at Philadelphia’s Prince Music Theater’s cabaret with his show, “Bruce on Bennett, A Loving Tribute to an American Music Treasure.” A media personality, he is well-known for serving as the first host of the 1980′s hit television show “Dancin’ On Air” as well as for being a talk show host on WWDB-FM, Philadelphia’s most popular talk radio station in the 80′s. Bruce is also one of the most sought-after band leaders leading The Eddie Bruce Orchestra for some of the most prestigious events in the Philadelphia/New Jersey region. This spring he was proud to be a part of the fundraising gala for Papermill Playhouse along with award-winning songwriter Stephen Schwartz and cabaret artist Liz Callaway.
“Once in a Lifetime – The Anthony Newley Songbook” with the Tom Adams Trio will be performed live on two different Monday nights in November – the 1st and 22nd at 7:00 p.m. at The Metropolitan Room, 34 West 22nd Street, New York City. The trio includes Tom Adams, music director/pianist/arranger, Jack Hegyi on Bass and Grant MacAvoy on drums. Tickets are $25 and are available to purchase by calling 212-206-0440 or visiting www.metropolitanroom.com. For more information about Eddie Bruce, visit www.eddiebruce.com.