Marilyn Maye Is A-Maye-Zing

Categories: Music


Marilyn Maye is an old-time standards singer who's sort of Helen Lawson meets Anita O'Day, but with a unique sound and an individual spin.

The 80-something singer -- enjoying a career renaissance as the queen of cabaret -- has a voice as sharp as a tool and a personality that's currently lighting up Feinstein's at Loews Regency, making old showtunes (like songs from My Fair Lady) sound completely new, and even daring to do the undoable ("Over the Rainbow," "I'm Still Here") and make them fresh and personal.

What's more, she takes on a newie ("Butter Into Cream" from Catch Me If You Can) and makes it clear it's an instant classic, a story song of the first order.

Best of all, Maye's patter isn't canned. She goes with the moment.

After doing "It Might as Well Be Spring," she joked, "I'm as jumpy as a gentile in the Catskills."

She informed us, "I've had three husbands and a meaningful relationship," then cutely muttered, "He was a bastard."

And her best utterance of all, during one of her wacky moments:

"Music is fun."

Especially when it's Maye at the mic.

If you've got that kind of cash, this is where you should spend it!

Even if you don't.

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Ms. Maye is wonderful but my chanteuse-loving heart belongs to Julie Wilson.


PS: Back in the '60s, Maye would be handed showtunes (like songs from "Cabaret") before the show even came out, so she recorded them and introduced them to the public. She also sang "Will everyone here kindly step to the rear?" from How Now Dow Jones on a car commercial and made lots of dough from that. She currently lives in Kansas City, but sweeps into NYC to do concerts and collect awards.


Exactly--she's tough and sweet at the same time. And she's in amazing voice and really delivers. The audience just eats her up. Also, she was friends with Margaret Whiting (the voice of Helen Lawson) and talks about her.


Love her already and I don't even know what she sounds like yet!  Seems like a tough and sweet broad (being a "lady" ain't all it's cracked up to be).  Unless I'm wrong and she did her show in white gloves.