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What a delight to see and hear a talented and polished singer perform one great song after another. That is exactly what I witnessed last night when Canadian vocalist Sam Broverman made his New York cabaret debut last night at the Metropolitan Room. Expanding on the songs on his CD:Dream Maker Heart Breaker: Sam Broverman Sings Johnny Mercer, Broverman performed 18 songs with lyrics by Johnny Mercer interspersed with a collection of entertaining an interesting stories of Mercer’s life.
Broverman opened the show with a lively version of Out of Breath and Scared to Death, which was Mercer’s first published song, and then continued to sing one classic Mercer lyric after another in a very pleasant and often thoughtful voice. The show included songs with music by Gordon Jenkins, Harry Warren, Jerome Kern, Hoagy Carmichael, Jimmy Van Heusen and some of the less well-known composers that Mercer worked with, but emphasis was put on Mercer’s work with Harold Arlen. Broverman did a beautifully touching This Time the Dreams on Me a rousing Accentuate the Positive and a very moving Come Rain or Come Shine from the Harold Arlen Songbook. Broverman closed the show with two Jimmy Van Heusen songs: Singing to Empty Tables I Thought About You. The audience wanted more, but alas the time had run out.
Mr. Broverman has studied and mastered the art of singing and was ably accompanied by long time Margaret Whiting band leader Tex Arnold on piano. Tex Arnold’s piano solos added to the enjoyment of That Old Black Magic and This Time the Dreams on Me.