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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, July 8, 2016 - Volume 44 Issue 28
Victor Janusz and friends
Arts & Entertainment
ALL STORIES
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Victor Janusz and friends

by Paul Torres - SGN A&E Writer

VICTOR JANUSZ
AND FRIENDS
'SUMMER STANDARDS'
EGAN'S BALLARD JAM HOUSE
June 17


Jazz artist Victor Janusz's latest album is called Living in a Blue State, but on the evening of Friday, June 17, he was in a summer state of mind at Egan's Ballard Jam House. The entertainer and popular pianist was accompanied by saxophone player Medearis 'MD' Dixson, singer Meg McLynn, and the inimitable vocalist Nora Michaels. They performed a wonderful show called 'Summer Standards!' The cozy crowd enjoyed their powerful performances while sipping on wine and nibbling on snacks. Victor is a great performer and host exuding wit and warmth.

They sang summer songs to soothe the soul and mend a broken heart such as a classy rendition of 'Sitting on the Dock of the Bay' where Janusz localized a famous line to 'left my home in Georgetown, headed for Elliott Bay' much to the delight of the audience. He soared through songs from his album as saxophonist 'MD' Dixson enhanced the songs and the summer atmosphere.

In a review of his album Living in a Blue State, Earshot Jazz praised his vocals: 'Janusz's richly expressive voice displays a debt to Frank Sinatra as well as obvious affinity for Elvis Costello.' Victor sang 'Never Cry Again' an original from his latest album written by New York songwriter Patrick Arena. He amazed the audience with 'French Kiss (Are You Ready for My Love?).'

Listening to the album is like having a charming, soothing friend with you on a Sunday afternoon. I especially like the sweet and simple 'A Song to Love.'

Ever the gentleman, Victor let the ladies shine. The effervescent Meg McLynn sang a sassy and moving version of 'Lost and Found' from the 1989 Tony Award best musical City of Angels. The classy Nora Michaels soared through a beautiful version of the classic 'Summertime' rousing the audience with her magic and soul. 'MD' Dixson's accompanying sax performance lifted the song even higher. 'Living is easy,' indeed.

The show kicked off with Victor's 'Don't Start the Show without Me,' but by the time the show ended we all wanted more from him and his friends. It was a cool cure for the summer blues and a reminder of the talented musicians we have in Seattle.

Coming up:
Victor Janusz continues in his 12th year as 'Exclusive Brunch Pianist' at Salty's on Alki (1936 Harbor Ave SW) every Sunday, 10am-2:30pm - and first and third Saturdays, too!

On Wednesday, July 20, Vic, Nora and Medearis make a special guest appearance with the Duffy Bishop Band at Teatro ZinZanni (222 Mercer St). Tickets $20 general; $30 premium reserved: 206-802-0015; https://zinzanni.com/seattle.

On Tuesday, August 16, the Victor Janusz Trio will headline the annual North City Jazz Walk on the Mainstage at the North City Jazz Bistro (1520 NE 177th St, Shoreline) - schedule TBA. North City Business Association sponsors this annual festival spotlighting the region's top jazz talent at a variety of venues along 15th Ave NE in Shoreline. The event usually happens the first Tuesday in August, but this year it's on the third Tuesday in August.

https://www.facebook.com/VJBand/ - Victor Janusz Band CD 'Living in a Blue State.'

https://www.reverbnation.com/noramichaels

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Victor Janusz and friends
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