Pearl Street Garage 1
- Artist: Mews Small
- Format: CD
- Release Date:4/13/2004
Mews' long professional career as a singer began as a teenager in New York. Dustin Hoffman, not yetfamous, discovered her and gave her her first role, acting and singing in a play he was directing. Later, she became extremely popular on the New York City night club circuit. She went on to act in many leading roles in resident theatres all over the East Coast. Maria von Trapp took her to the Montreal World's Fair, where Mews stunned the crowd of 20,000 as the lead in the The Sound of Music. Maria said that Mews' performance was the best and truest representation of herself that she had ever seen. Mews eventually landed the role of'Frenchy' in the original Broadway show Grease, later playing the same role opposite John Travolta at theShubert in Los Angeles. Mews has had co-star roles in 18 feature films and numerous TV showsand stage productions. She has worked with Dustin Hoffman, Morgan Freeman, Woody Allen, Susan Sarandon, Henry Fonda, James Earl Jones, Elizabeth Taylor, Danny Devito, and Vanessa Redgrave. One of Mews' most notable roles was that of Candy, opposite Jack Nicholson, in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. Recently, she played in Man on the Moon with Jim Carrey. Mews exhibits a vast range of singing styles, everything from country western to ragtime. Her CD features songs from the 20's through the 40's, some terrific tunes from unknown composers, and much much more. Her voice is a singular and passionate experiencce, never to be forgotten. Her music melts your heart; her performances hypnotize and entrance. Audiences are immediately charmed by her, and her singing delivers the promise of her enchanting presentation. Mews Small has a large audience of fans in Los Angeles. She sings every week at the UnUrban and at numerous other venues around town. Her new CD, Pearl Street Garage #1, has been selling rapidly since it's release in November 2002, and her next CD is only months away. Mews is a long time voting member of 'The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences'. She will be attending The Academy Awards February 29, 2004. Reviews: Radio DJ Reviews for Mews Small's CD Pearl Street Garage #1 Everybody here in Boston loves listening to Mews Small's Pearl Street Garage #1. Her collection of old standards is a nostalgic journey down memory lane. Her interpretation is captivating. Mews's voice is ideal and resonates with a sound that is perfect for the songs of this era. Wow! What a talent! - Ron Della Chiesa, DJ at WGBH Radio in Boston and WPLM in Plymouth, MA Most popular album I've ever played! More people called in about Pearl Street Garage #1 than any other album. Most eclectic collection of songs I've ever heard. - Don Wright, KMUN Oregon, DJ of 'Anything Goes' show. Barkan's CD Selection of the Month by Harvey Barkan Mews Small, Pearl Street Garage #1, Highland Light Productions, MS4255, Recorded on CD: 10 Selections: TT = 36:83 Mews Small has a unique voice, that compels listening, with a let-loose emotion and a Broadway power. Creative arrangements, with touches of whimsy at times, draws you into the musical messages of these veteran songs with reverence and delight. It was so compelling, I forgot about my valued morning coffee until the CD had almost finished it's tunes, and my needed hot beverage was cold! A ten tune play list consisted of mostly 1920s beauties by Gus Kahn, Walter Donaldson, Billy Rose, and Con Conrad, in addition to earlier traditional songs. The latest song was the 1943 'Comin' In On A Wing And A Prayer,' performed with appropriate emotion and spirituality to honor determination and bravery of the perilous trials of World War II. It was a significant song of a difficult time. Effective slowing of tempo on 'Yes Sir, That's My Baby' and 'I'm Always Chasing Rainbows' brought out a restrained energy that nailed listener interest. 'Hand Me Down My Walking Cane' had such spirit to it that it perhaps could have been suitable for a slightly swinging church service. Good use of rests (pauses) focused attention and anticipation during 'I'll See You In My Dreams' and the 'My Buddy' ending. 'I'll See You In My Dreams,' done so well by so many vocalists, now has another very memorable and wonderful version. Other tunes were 'You've Got To See Mama Every Night,' 'I'm Always Chasing Rainbows,' 'Hello Central, Give Me Heaven,' Dark Eyes,' and 'Abide With Me.' Mews Small's cleverly named band, 'The Small Band,' featured excellent musicians: Phil Small, piano and backup vocals; Curtis Robertson Jr., upright bass; Raymond Pitts, clarinet and drums; Jim Coffman, trombone, mandolin, violin, and guitar; Laura Kass, violin; Mitta Wise, backup vocals; and Steve Goodie, guitar. Each instrumentalist was featured along the way on this CD, with particularly attractive accents of clarinet and violin. Coffman deserves the one-man band award for his participation with numerous instruments. Although not mentioned on the CD enclosure, you've probably seen the multi-talented Mews Small in feature roles in numerous films and TV shows, most notably that of Candy, opposite Jack Nicholson, in 'One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest.' --- Mews Small began her singing career as a teenager in New York. One of her first roles was singing and acting in a play directed by the then unknown Dustin Hoffman. After some time in the New York night club circuit and roles in East Coast theatres, including the original Broadway cast of Grease, Small moved to California. She has appeared in 18 feature films and numerous TV shows. She even ran for US Congress. On this CD Small sings songs from the 1920's and 1940's and some older American traditionals. She is backed up by The Small Band, an acoustic ensemble of piano, violin, bass, drums, clarinet, guitar, etc. It's easy to close your eyes and image these songs being played and sung on a theatrical stage 80 years ago. I remember hearing some of these songs as a kid, which was a long time after they were written. But, they are old standards or sound like they should have been. They are art music now and Small and her band do a good job of giving them a breath of life once more. Key Track: My Buddy Reviewed by: Keith Quillen Reviews of Live Shows from the Past Mews Small's short set at the Starwood was a teaser; a flirting view of a myth in the making. The interest she generated could have supported a far longer exposure. Theater-trained, she comes to the audience with more than just songs. She is costumed in a persona that is half tough moll, half barfly, straw hat, feather boa and gingham dress. The story goes that she sings saloon songs. She puts on a good show. She is an actress. And her audience is won over and delighted by the images that she conjures up; they are part of our culture. Brazen, with a stupendous voice and controlled raucousness, she has found a rich lode in John Jennings' material, particularly in his 'Fallen Women' song cycle, to which she imparts a wry sentimentality. - The Hollywood Reporter Irving Haber, whose club has projected many an entertainer into the international spotlight, has another winner in Mews Small, a vivacious and youthful singer with a lovely voice and a special, almost indefinable way of putting a song across. Whether it is a sentimental ballad like 'Help Me Make It Through The Night' or a haunting one like 'Children of Darkness' or a rhythm number by the Beatles, Miss Small handles it with Poise and with pleasure.... There are plenty of 'canaries' striving to make it in show business, but it takes the something extra to make a star and I feel that Miss Small has this quality. - Park East, La Dolce Vita column Maria Von Trapp personally praised Mews for her portrayal of herself in 'The Sound of Music': ..... And some of the sweetest sounds came from the vibrant throat of Mews Small who proved to be a take-charge girl like Mama Trapp herself. It wasn't easy, with Mrs. Trapp and her musical brood in the front row, but it was successful. The ovation at the end was broken only when Mrs. Trapp joined the radian cast for a bow, and a brief homily and the kind of praise that often makes careers. Wrapping Miss Small in a motherly embrace, Mrs. Trapp told the audience 'I have seen many productions of 'The Sound of Music' on Broadway, in big cities, road companies, in the movies. There have been some very good Marias, but I knew they were playing. But tonight, I would see this girl. (another hug) and I said, 'It was I.' - Burlington, Vermont Press.
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