Friday night we headed out to Santa Monica to see Maria's favorite folk singer and my favorite piano man. In another era, Kenny White would have already made it. He is not only an accomplished pianist, but also a fine singer, songwriter and producer. His music is filled with humor and thought provoking ideas. Friday night he played songs from an upcoming CD and even though it has been some time since his last full CD release, the songs sound just as good as his previous efforts. I can't wait to hear the final produced versions. Kenny played for about 40 minutes and although he finished with his standard closer, "In My Recurring Dream", the rest of the set was filled with unexpected turns. What is so interesting is that this is exactly opposite of what Cheryl brings to the table.
I've seen Cheryl Wheeler 4 or 5 times now. It is an interesting show because she tells many of the same jokes year in and year out, and yet you still end up laughing. Somehow, there is still a spontaneity to her delivery and it sure is hard to put her down for that. Most of the songs are part of a small group of songs that she plays every year. Still, they are fun songs and I don't hear them often so again, hard to quibble with her choices. She has actually recorded a few new songs this year and played some for us. There were also new stories to go along with those songs. So, over all, this was the best Cheryl Wheeler show I've seen since the first time I saw her. I don't mean to put her down. I will probably see her on her next tour out west and the next after that. She is such a warm and funny person on stage, you can't help but have a good time.