For Immediate Release
Appearing March 6-11
The RRAZZ ROOM
222 Mason Street San Francisco, CA 94102
Lucie Arnaz, holder of the flame
By Ken Vermes
Lucie Arnaz is no light weight. As someone who is the daughter of two famous entertainers, she has the immediate problem of being tagged a nostalgia act, or worse, someone riding the coattails of her parents.
But there is not magic dust in the RRAZZ Room, even though it can sometimes seem like it. Lucie is a very professional singer because she has paid her dues. Her voice is a powerful instrument, her stage presence precise and smooth, and her band and arrangements are first rate. And for those of you as fascinated and dedicated to the art of the Latin style, this is a show you should not miss. Lucie reinvents that magic moment in America when Latin music and artists began what would be a series of invasions of the American popular music scene. This was a movement that would lead to Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie recording and writing songs in the Latin styles, the emergence of the great Chano Pozo, and the incredible party documented in the recent film “Chico and Rita”.
What raises her show beyond the usual, is that her story, heritage, and experience in show business makes for a very moving and entertaining night. As she carefully and wonderfully explains, her father’s influence on her was profound. Holding a small case of cassette tapes that she discovered in Desi Arnaz’s house after his death, she tells the story of how finding the boxes and boxes of material including recordings of his band and their arrangements, led her to begin a path of musical discovery.
And beyond this, Lucie is having a great time on stage. Like a golfer that can smash a tiny ball hundreds of yards, Lucie can sing a song in a powerful, very strong way that engages her listeners. And that mastery of melody and lyric is no small achievement. Many singers never have her power and charm. And whether it is a rousing anthem like “Cubanchero”, a smooth reworking of “Johnny Angel,” or a very smart rendition of “Blame it on the Bossa Nova,” it all works.
The RRAZZ Room has a big advantage for every music lover. Not only can you see an artist up close, but you can experience the thrill of seeing a top flight show and meet the artists in person. This is club life that perfectly captures the joy and spirit and thrill of live entertainment. Lucie Arnaz is no nostalgia act. She is the keeper of the flame. And as her joyous voice rang through the room, you could not help but marvel how on the Latin side, the music never stopped. It left everyone doing the Conga line right through the rest of our lives. This flame is still burning. May it burn forever.
Ken Vermes writes about music, photographs musicians, and when time allows can be heard playing the sax in unusual places.
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