Joey Arias in Concert this weekend at the Abrons Arts Center/Henry Street Settlement, October 8 and 9 at 8:00pm. Tickets are $25 and well worth every penny.
I saw Joey's birthday show last Saturday. I was completely blown away. Joey's voice is an incredible whiskey soprano. His band for this show is more than just good--they're on the cutting edge. The guitarist in particular brought a style that I've never heard before. When he and Joey start vamping together, trading musical growls and squeaks, you'll marvel at hearing something that sounds genuinely fresh and unique, at least to my ear. The lighting design, while spare, was interesting and did a good job of showing off the bizarrely fascinating costumes, one of which is entirely unexpected. And on top of all that, Mx. Arias effortlessly delivers in high heels that look taller than some stilts.
Most of all, Joey knows how to enrapture an audience. No matter whether the song was upbeat, slow and sad, or just off the wall--I couldn't look away and didn't want it to end. Newer and younger performers would do well to emulate his classic demeanor while telling stories and interacting with the audience--somehow Joey is self-deprecating with pride, filthy with decorum, catty with love, and vulnerable with grace and strength.
I became a fan when I saw Arias with a Twist, and now I may become a groupie. Earl Dax pads his reputation for producing solid events, and Joey Arias and his band deliver one of the most musically innovative concerts I've heard in years. Don't miss it.