Thursday, March 26, 2009

Instead She Wrote…

Here at Two Well Read we try very very hard to come up with new and scintillating discussions on the state of music, life and all the rest of it, but some days things just don’t flow like they should. So today instead of a fascinating discourse on a subject artistic you’re gonna get…

Things Wendy Lane Does When She Should be Writing Her Blog Post

  • Visit favorite websites; ponder why I can’t get my eye makeup to look like the “girls” on RuPaul’s Drag Race
  • Spin round and round in my desk chair until I’m dizzy…perhaps this will shake loose the brilliance within
  • Check E-mail
  • Stare out the window and wonder why the neighbor across the street never invites me over to use her pool (maybe because I am constantly staring out the window)
  • Play computer word game in the hopes that resplendent verbiage will result
  • Call friends to discuss latest medical, legal, amorous crises
  • Type title onto page,become overwhelmed with sense of accomplishment, take a nap
  • Check E-mail
  • Remove cats from keyboard…on second thought, maybe I could make something out of djklwepatepjoiat
  • Shake fist at ceiling and curse my lot in life
  • Check E-mail Look under desk to see if dazzling first sentence may be found there.
  • Make list of things I’m doing rather than writing blog post
  • Check E-mail

So what I really want to know from all this spinning and listing is what inspires YOU, and what do YOU do when your muse deserts you and you find yourself stuck? Do you have a ritual? A favorite place you go to get your mojo back? Inspire us with your answer by April 22nd and you could be the lucky recipient of a $20 I-tunes gift card.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Ad Libitum with Jason Graae

Finding the right words to describe Jason Graae is something of a challenge. He’s an actor, singer, instrumentalist, voice-over artist, and musical comedian. Jason has appeared at Carnegie Hall, on Broadway, hit television shows, operas, and in his own highly acclaimed, fall-on-the-floor funny solo show. He has received the New York Nightlife Award, Four Bistro awards, and a Drama Desk nomination for Best actor in a musical. He’s also the greatest person in the world to spend an evening with at the Delta Grill eating fried okra, and gabbing, and the ONLY person to have ever hired me for my dancing abilities. Being one of the funniest people on the planet has its drawbacks, mostly that your friends are always asking you to contribute free commentary to their blogs. Fortunately, he has a soft spot for redheads, and I am thrilled to share my friend with you as this month's special celebrity guest. So pull up a chair, grab a bowl of fried okra, Girl Scout cookies, Ben & Jerry’s or whatever your guilty pleasure happens to be and enjoy…

What is your current State of Mind?
I am currently reading "The Power of Now" and am discovering the brilliance as well as the insanity that the mind is capable of.I think mine has been teetering dangerously close toward the insanity, BUT IT'S NOT ANYMORE OKAAAAY?

What was the first song you ever performed in public?
"Call Me Irresponsible" in 6th grade auditioning for "George M!"
I did get the plum role of Boy #2.

What was the first musical act you ever saw in person?
Victor Borge.He made fun of my sister coming in late for Act 2 and she was completely oblivious and I was completely mortified.
What is your idea of perfect musical happiness?
Being on the inside of a really tight chord.

What do you regard as the lowest depth of musical misery?
When my oboe reed broke in Palm Beach 2 weeks ago and I sounded like a duck with hemmrhoids(sp) and this woman in the front row had her hands over her ears. Turns out she was trying not to sneeze. But still...

Name three composers or lyricists you wish would write a song for you?
Amanda Green,Amanda McBroom,Jerry Herman
What virtue do you consider essential for every musician?
Eagerness to please 50%
To hell with what anyone thinks %50

What Profession other than your own would you like to attempt?
1st chair Oboist in a major symphony orchestra

What profession would you not like to attempt?
2nd chair oboist

What is your greatest extravagance?
My generosity and love for others.
Just kidding.
The $$ I pay my back-up girls, the Foie Graaes.
Ask Wendy Lane Bailey.

Who are your real life heroes? Mama.The Dali Llama.

Where do you see yourself musically/artistically in ten years?
The front room of the Duplex singing Shipoopee.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Another Winner

Congratulations and a big Redhead smooch to Charles Martin the winner of this month’s RedHead award for devising the perfect addition to our Ad Libitum questionnaire. His cleverness gains him a permanent place on our questionnaire and a copy of Ann Hampton Callaway’s latest release At Last. The winning query, Where do you see yourself musically and artistically in the next ten years? has been added and answered by March’s special guest celebrity. Tune in tomorrow for the big reveal. In the meantime, Mr. Martin, drop us a line at with your contact information and we’ll get your prize right out to you.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Happy News

It is my very great pleasure to tell you that my friend and partner in crime, Miss. Laurel, is the recipient of the 2008 Backstage Bistro Award for outstanding Jazz Vocalist. She is being honored for her New York City performances at The Metropolitan Room and Birdland. It couldn’t have happened to a nicer girl, and I am thrilled for her! The official ceremony will happen in April, and we’ll be sure to bring you all the goings on and pics from the big night.

Monday, March 2, 2009

We'd Rather You Didn't...

An occasional series in which your Redheads relay horrifying things they’ve seen, heard, and (gasp) even done on stage that they’d rather not experience again.

Wendy Lane: The first thing that springs to mind is the singer who said before every song in her set “the next song I’m going to try to do for you is…” This led to a whole string of emotions beginning with Curiosity: Why was she going to try? Might she be suddenly sucked into the piano by a force beyond her control? This was followed by Irritation: I made the effort to come and see her and now she’s not sure she’ll be able to do the job? Which led me ultimately to worry: What can I, a simple audience member, do to help her if she is unable to continue? It was a most uncomfortable performance for those on stage and those in the audience. To quote that great musical sage Yoda “do, or do not. There is no try”.

Laurel: Sometimes performers may forget a line or a lyric; the major difference between seasoned professionals and the inexperienced is that the pros aren't thrown off the horse when this happens. After all, whatever do you think seasoned them in the first place? That's right: messing up in front of an audience. The pros don’t lose their rhythm. They keep going. If the mistake is so bad, so very very bad that there is no moving forward, they "pick themselves up, dust themselves off, and start all over again". They do not blame anyone. They do not allow the audience to feel uncomfortable for one second. And they go on to have a good time, because they already know they are human.

The inexperienced don't. It has come as a terrible shock. And so they freeze. Or blame the band.

Or cry. Or blame the lighting person. Or melt in to a puddle like the Wicked Witch of the West. All of which make the audience have to worry about the performer. This worry is not part of the audience's job description. THEIR job is to have a god time. Period.

The performer's job is to allow that to happen. Encourage it to happen. Inspire it. Create it. And lighten up!

What about you? Do you have a performance pet peeve? Do share it with us, BUT spare us names and other identifying details. We’ve all been there so we’re way more interested in the what than the who did it! We’re listening.