Melissa Manchester, The Rose, April 6, 2018
The legendary Melissa Manchester made an appearance at The Rose in Pasadena, presenting a wondrously memorable collection of songs from a vast and brilliant career. Included within the intimate yet epic set were audience favorites as well as selections from The Fellas – Melissa Manchester’s 21st album released late last year. In addition to the grand and sweeping vocals of Ms. Manchester, also featured within the show were Ron Walters on keyboards and long-time manager Susan Holder on drums and percussion. The night would be absolutely magical, and what a treat it was to hear Ms. Manchester share her memories in between the vibrantly rapturous songs! Opening the adventure with Ain’t That A Kick In Her Head – the first song from The Fellas – The Melissa Manchester Trio providing a warm and wonderful tribute to late, great Dean Martin.
Throughout the show, videos of The Fellas that Ms. Manchester was paying homage to were shown on screens across the club, greatly enhancing the intrigue of the evening. From the gorgeous refrains of Chance Are (Johnny Mathis) and beyond, The Fellas would eventually be performed in its entirety throughout the night. Also included within the wide ranging set were Through The Eyes Of Love (Theme For Ice Castles) and Midnight Blue, absolutely timeless and radiantly after all these years. A truly enchanting moment of the show was when Melissa Manchester invited Fanchester contest winner Johnny Schaefer up onstage to perform a stunning duet of Whenever I Call You Friend.
Towards the end of the set, Ms. Manchester presented one of her biggest hits Don’t Cry Out Loud, and what an emotional and triumphant song this remains – especially when performed within a live setting. And then what a dynamic conclusion The Melissa Manchester Trio would leave the audience with! The closing songs from The Fellas is entitled How Do You Keep The Music Playing – a tribute to the iconic Tony Bennett that clearly captivated the house when imaginative interpreted by Melissa Manchester. This would lead to the dazzling grand finale of You Gotta Love The Life – Ms. Manchester’s exhilarating mantra to being an artist pursuing a career in the wonderful yet wildly unpredictable world of the music business.
If all this was not enough to thoroughly satisfy the fans, Melissa Manchester stayed long after the set to greet fans, sign autographs, pose for selfies – with both artist and the Fanchesters showing a mutual love and respect for a music career that has been truly inspirational and adventurous! Melissa Manchester is a performer for the ages, and her passionate vocals and jubilant stage presence remains as captivating as ever! One could truly say that on a Friday night at The Rose in Pasadena, Melissa Manchester was at the very height of her magnificent artistry. By the way, congratulations to Melissa Manchester and Susan Holder for celebrating a successful music partnership that has spanned a glorious 35 years!
An interview with Melissa Manchester, conducted from The Rose right after the fan meet and greet, is coming soon to Highwire Daze Online!
Upcoming Melissa Manchester Show Dates:
April 13th – The Canyon Club – Santa Clarita, CA
April 14th – The Coach House Concert Hall – San Juan Capistrano, CA
(Review by Ken Morton – Photos by Jack Lue)
Melissa Manchester on Facebook