×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Sam Harris

Sam Harris, a versatile Broadway belter with a winning presence and sunny personality, has brought a varied bag of songs to Arci's Place. The singer has a decided flair for show tunes, but his repertoire runs the gamut from familiar theater pieces to a few soul flavored contemporary songs by Bonnie Raitt, Cyndi Lauper and John Lennon.

With:
Piano, Steve Marzullo.

Sam Harris, a versatile Broadway belter with a winning presence and sunny personality, has brought a varied bag of songs to Arci’s Place. The singer has a decided flair for show tunes, but his repertoire runs the gamut from familiar theater pieces to a few soul flavored contemporary songs by Bonnie Raitt, Cyndi Lauper and John Lennon.

Nominated for a 1997 Tony for his performance as a manipulative con man in Cy Coleman’s “The Life,” Harris, while gifted with a great range and big lungs, has a tendency to push too hard at times, bringing an often shrill clarion call to a song’s dramatic crescendo. When not over-stylized and overwrought, the singer settles down to crooning, and he is decidedly more appealing and passionately persuasive.

Harris inserts some broad standup comedy, including an overlong ode to the theater that concludes with an actor’s endless self-aggrandizing bio as read from the pages of a program. Anticipating his forthcoming move to L.A., the actor reads items from the wrinkled newspaper pages he is using to wrap wine glasses while packing. News clips noting a celeb psychic has been sued for consumer fraud and some Bush bashing regarding controversial environmental issues garnered a few aud chuckles, but it was a decidedly awkward detour from his song fest.

Harris turns Sondheim’s “You Could Drive a Person Crazy” from its original femme perspective in “Company,” adding his own lyrics for a playful manic confessional, and sings Coleman’s “There’s Gotta Be Something Better Than This” with a vivid wandering and restless intensity. A Harold Arlen medley of “I Gotta Right to Sing the Blues” and “Stormy Weather” revealed the bluesy emotional fiber of the classic torch songs.

Harris winds up with some saloon songs. He adds a vaudevillian Jolson edge to Johnny Mercer’s “I Wanna Be Around” and boozy melancholy to “Drinking Again,” winding up with the Arthur Schwartz loser’s exit, “(I’ll Go My Way) By Myself.” Restrained and less affected, Harris offered a warm and subtle farewell medley.

The barroom piano tinkling by Steve Marzullo is smoothly supportive, as is his adventurous approach to big bold show tunes.

Sam Harris

Arci's Place; 80 capacity; $30

Production: Presented inhouse. Opened Aug. 14, 2001, reviewed Aug. 17. Closes Aug. 25.

Cast: Piano, Steve Marzullo.

More Music

  • Carrie Underwood House

    Carrie Underwood Lists Former Mansion Outside Nashville (EXCLUSIVE)

    Pop country music queen Carrie Underwood has listed her lavishly appointed mansion in a guard-gated golf course development in the affluent suburban community of Brentwood, Tenn., about 20 miles south of downtown Nashville, for $1.45 million. The seven-time Grammy winning fourth season “American Idol” winner isn’t seeking much profit on the property she bought for [...]

  • Here’s How Much Money 10 Artists

    Here’s How Much Money 10 Artists Are Owed by PledgeMusic

    For eight years, PledgeMusic was a success story: A direct-to-fan platform where artists worked directly with their audiences to fund their albums, tours and all stripes of merchandise, with fans able to purchase everything from custom guitar picks to private concerts. Yet last June, Variety broke the news that the company is struggling to pay [...]

  • R. Kelly

    R. Kelly Charged With Multiple Counts of Sexual Abuse

    UPDATED: The Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx announced criminal charges against R. Kelly at a press conference this afternoon. The singer has been charged with 10 counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse involving four victims — three of whom were minors — in incidents that took place between 1998 and 2010; he will have [...]

  • Lil Pump Harverd Dropout cover

    Album Review: Lil Pump's 'Harverd Dropout'

    On the cover of “Harverd Dropout,” the sophomore album from Miami rapper Lil Pump, the young MC is tossing homework papers in the air and looking rakish with his graduation cap askew, while wearing a robe emblazoned with the misspelled university name from his new full-length’s title. If this is meant to signal some sort [...]

  • Imagine Dragons - Dan ReynoldsImagine Dragons

    Imagine Dragons Topples Nickelback as World's Worst Band, Says Slipknot Frontman

    Slipknot and Stone Sour frontman Corey Taylor has chosen Nickelback’s successor as the most reviled band on earth: Imagine Dragons. During an interview on Tuesday, February 19, conducted by Sex Pistols guitarist Steve Jones for his  radio show, “Jonesy’s Jukebox,” on Los Angeles’ KLOS, Jones made a comment about Nickelback being the “scapegoat of rock [...]

  • Behind the Hit: How Diplo Found

    Hitmaker of the Month: How Diplo Found Dance-Pop Perfection With 'Electricity'

    The third time was a charm for super-producer duo Silk City, the first collaboration between longtime friends Diplo (A.K.A. Thomas Wesley Pentz, Jr.) and Mark Ronson, who between them have worked with everyone from M.I.A. and Madonna and Beyonce (Diplo) to Lady Gaga and Amy Winehouse and Bruno Mars (Ronson). After releasing the pair of [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content