Barb Jungr was ranked No 1 for The Best Cabaret 2008 by Time Out, New York, No 2, The Best Cabaret 2009 for ‘The Men I Love’ at the legendary Café Carlyle, and is a winner of numerous international awards as vocalist and recording artist.
Linked to her new CD, the “The Men I Love” show has come to the Edinburgh Fringe, featuring favourite songs by the male songwriters she admires most – Dylan, Diamond and Cohen with new arrangements by her pianist, the composer, Simon Wallace. As she explains, ”these songs make magic somehow. I think it brings so much to the song hearing a male perspective sung through a woman's voice, heart and soul.”
The selection of songs to illustrate the New American Songbook is diverse – 60s era pop ballads, jazz and Motown, moving from Neil Diamond’s hit song for the Monkees, “I am a Believer,” the melancholic narrative, “Night Comes On” by Leonard Cohen, to Jimmy Webb’s immortal "Witchita Lineman" (written for Glen Campbell) which Barb describes, “the best love song every written”.
In this show, we experience the emotion, passion, and sincerity through Jungr’s rich, soaring voice, a dramatic performance from the heart indeed. The effervescent Barb, with her English Midlands earthy humour, presents an all round cabaret act, a story teller through music and lyrics; she also entertains the packed crowd at the Assembly Rooms with anecdotes and sparky witticisms.
My only quibble is about the staging and production values. A more suitable venue would be a cocktail bar with tables and chairs, an intimate cabaret setting and soft lighting to give a sense of glamour.
20, 21, 22 August, 8pm