Review: Sasha Dobson's ALBUM RELEASE Concert at Birdland Theater Puts Artistry and Originality Center Stage

With her new album GIRL TALK and a recent Birdland show, Sasha Dobson provides pure joy.

By: Oct. 29, 2021

Review: Sasha Dobson's ALBUM RELEASE Concert at Birdland Theater Puts Artistry and Originality Center Stage

There are those performers working in cabaret and concert because the harsh world (and the imbalance of opportunities) of musical theater did not have the courtesy of making a place at the table for them. That lack of welcome is sad for those people because every artist deserves a chance to create, everybody deserves a chance to sing. Those musical theater actors turned cabaret singers take into their hands their own destinies, creating club acts, concerts and cabaret shows that their friends and family come to, and sometimes they are lucky enough and industrious enough to build up a following of fans that have no associations whatsoever with their personal lives. They manage to carve out an artistic existence based on training and hard work, and they are artistically satisfied.

Then there are those who are born who will end up on the stage because there is no other path for them, the artistry oozes from every fiber of their being, there is no possible alternative for them because the world and the people in the world will not have it any other way. When they sweat they sweat art, when they cry the tears are art, when they move their little finger, it is moved artistically, when they cut their little finger, they bleed artistry. It is their path, it is their destiny.

Sasha Dobson is just such a person.

Review: Sasha Dobson's ALBUM RELEASE Concert at Birdland Theater Puts Artistry and Originality Center Stage

Sasha Dobson sweats, cries, moves, bleeds, breathes, blinks, wakes, walks, and sleeps art. Sasha Dobson is a walking work of art, who is to be admired, revered, and marveled at. Every ounce of Sasha Dobson's artistic nature and energy strode up onto the stage at The Birdland Theater on Sunday night and a room full of people who worship that which is original and she who is fabulous blessedly took part in the sacrament. Sasha Dobson had come to celebrate.

Review: Sasha Dobson's ALBUM RELEASE Concert at Birdland Theater Puts Artistry and Originality Center Stage More than a celebration of the release of her new album GIRL TALK, the October 25th concert in the Birdland basement was a celebration of live music, of a family of musicians gathering together for a family of fans - so many musicians that, in fact, they didn't all fit on the stage, so many fans that, in fact, many were content to stand at the back of the theater, by the bar, looking past the cameras that simulcast the concert online. Clearly, Ms. Dobson has a following, and it is, frankly, a shock and a surprise that she was playing the Birdland Theater and not the Birdland Jazz Club upstairs, a room that accommodates many more guests. Still, it was better this way because it created a much more intimate experience for everyone, and that's a vibe that jives with Sasha Dobson's aesthetic in the extreme. It is patently clear that Ms. Dobson wishes to reach out and touch people and to draw them close to her, as closely as she did her guest artist, Nora Jones, after the friends performed their duet of the album's title track.

Review: Sasha Dobson's ALBUM RELEASE Concert at Birdland Theater Puts Artistry and Originality Center Stage

It would be wonderful to say that the Jones-Dobson duet was the highlight of the evening, but there is unquestionably no way to single out one moment or one performance in the program as a highlight. Singing her original compositions from the CD and her individualized takes on famous and beloved songs like "These Boots Are Made For Walking", Dobson delivered a rare evening of theater in which every moment could be hailed as spectacular. Working alongside Review: Sasha Dobson's ALBUM RELEASE Concert at Birdland Theater Puts Artistry and Originality Center Stage six musicians of supreme skill, Sasha embraced every poetic sentence and each melodic line, doing justice to the composers and lyricists, but also to the dedicated artists backing her up. Remarking at one point that she and bassist Neal Miner need not speak, they can read each other from across the room, Ms. Dobson merely confirmed that which was a growing suspicion from the audience: it's in her blood, as it is with every jazz musician who carries on multiple dialogues simultaneously with the musicians, the composers, the instruments, and the energy in the air. Few, though, could hold a candle to Sasha Dobson when it comes to style and individuality.

Review: Sasha Dobson's ALBUM RELEASE Concert at Birdland Theater Puts Artistry and Originality Center Stage

Resplendent in her nouveau-beehive hairdo and buttercream vintage-vibe cocktail frock, Ms. Dobson was as honest and as real with the crowd as she would be hosting a party with fifty of her closest friends. Worrying little about occasional brushes with light profanity, Sasha showed off her unique musical vocabulary and the special sound that she has cultivated with her voice, cadence and phrasing, while constantly moving smoothly and groovily her body in full embrace Review: Sasha Dobson's ALBUM RELEASE Concert at Birdland Theater Puts Artistry and Originality Center Stage of the artistry of her cohorts, artistry for which she could not, would not, should not disguise her appreciation. As important as the music she made, singing all ten of the songs from the GIRL TALK album, is the character on display. Through her interactions with the band, the audience, even the virtual audience, you can tell that she's a good person, a nice person, a fun person that you would want to know and hang with in real life. And no matter how brilliant an artist is, that always makes their artistry, the observance of that artistry, and supporting that artistry through your own industry, so much the better.

THIS was one of those better nights in a nightclub.

Sasha Dobson's Birdland show was a one-off but there are lots of great shows available on the Birdland website HERE.

HERE is the Sasha Dobson website.

Buy the album Girl Talk HERE.

The Sasha Dobson band at Birdland was:

Sasha Dobson - Vocals

Peter Bernstein - Guitar

Neal Miner - Bass

Kenny Wollesen - Drums

Steven Bernstein - Trumpet

Ian Hendrickson-Smith - Saxophone

Smith Dobson - Vibes and saxophone

Mauro Refosco - Percussion

special guest: Norah Jones on "Girl Talk"

Sasha Dobson gets a five out of five microphones rating for performing her entire show without the use of a lyric sheet, tablet, or music stand.

Review: Sasha Dobson's ALBUM RELEASE Concert at Birdland Theater Puts Artistry and Originality Center Stage

Review: Sasha Dobson's ALBUM RELEASE Concert at Birdland Theater Puts Artistry and Originality Center Stage Review: Sasha Dobson's ALBUM RELEASE Concert at Birdland Theater Puts Artistry and Originality Center Stage

Review: Sasha Dobson's ALBUM RELEASE Concert at Birdland Theater Puts Artistry and Originality Center Stage

Review: Sasha Dobson's ALBUM RELEASE Concert at Birdland Theater Puts Artistry and Originality Center Stage

Review: Sasha Dobson's ALBUM RELEASE Concert at Birdland Theater Puts Artistry and Originality Center Stage

Review: Sasha Dobson's ALBUM RELEASE Concert at Birdland Theater Puts Artistry and Originality Center Stage

Review: Sasha Dobson's ALBUM RELEASE Concert at Birdland Theater Puts Artistry and Originality Center Stage

Review: Sasha Dobson's ALBUM RELEASE Concert at Birdland Theater Puts Artistry and Originality Center Stage

Review: Sasha Dobson's ALBUM RELEASE Concert at Birdland Theater Puts Artistry and Originality Center Stage

Review: Sasha Dobson's ALBUM RELEASE Concert at Birdland Theater Puts Artistry and Originality Center Stage Review: Sasha Dobson's ALBUM RELEASE Concert at Birdland Theater Puts Artistry and Originality Center Stage

Review: Sasha Dobson's ALBUM RELEASE Concert at Birdland Theater Puts Artistry and Originality Center Stage

Review: Sasha Dobson's ALBUM RELEASE Concert at Birdland Theater Puts Artistry and Originality Center Stage

Photos by Stephen Mosher



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