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Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out

Rachel relaxes with her friends and fans in a wonderful, magical night of music and merriment.

Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out

Last night, during her intimate concert at 54 Below, Rachel Bay Jones referenced her 2009 album ShowFolk, recalling how she was at a point in her life when she had left acting, was a single working mother, and trying to figure things out. That is when a friend encouraged her, mightily, to record the album, declaring that people needed to hear what she does. That friend was not wrong; indeed, that friend was as right as they could be. Fortunately, things changed for Rachel Bay Jones, and, now, the world gets to hear what she does, which is not (on paper) unique... but once in a room with Rachel Bay Jones, it becomes unique. That is because Rachel Bay Jones is unique in that most important of ways that a person can be unique: she is absolutely, one hundred percent, authentic and original. There is not a disingenuous bone in Ms. Jones' body. When she brings herself to the stage and the story, there is no pretense, there is no performance, there is simply a woman with a voice as pure as rarified air and as pretty as the first blossom of spring, who has come to tell a story, from the heart. It's an all-around win, every time, but especially last night.

Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out Also, last night, Rachel Bay Jones touched upon the fact that this particular show has been repeatedly rescheduled since 2019, thanking the audience for their patience and for "sticking with us." As one of the many who, excitedly, put that first date on the calendar and kept moving it forward, please allow this writer to say that it was easy to stick with Jones and co., and it was completely worth the wait. The show that Rachel is presenting is one of the loveliest, most emotionally satisfying to come along this season, and possibly any other season, and completely worth going out on a day so miserably hot as yesterday. No matter the pain of being out in the heat, once inside the walls of 54 Below and enjoying the Rachel Bay Jones show, everything was right with the world.

Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out Her show, Rachel Bay Jones explained, was designed to be an evening of relaxing with songs that make her happy, songs that would make everyone else happy, songs that would act as (if I may spoil a good bit from the show) "magical mushrooms" for the night. Her mission was heartily accomplished as she sang almost every type of music imaginable from Seventies Paul Simon to Nineties Indigo Girls, from Sinatra to Sondheim, from Rodgers and Hart to Pasek and Paul. There was no arc, no path, no goal other than the spreading of joy and the nurturing of hope, and the audience went, happily, wherever this guru of goodwill wanted them to go. It was easy, and one suspects that this is the effect that Rachel Bay Jones has on every person who encounters her on a day-to-day basis. It's a gift, and, like her talent as a singing storytelling actress, one that Rachel Bay Jones wields with ease, with power, and with heart.

Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out That heart was particularly on display last night when Rachel Bay Jones welcomed to the stage special guests Jennifer Laura Thompson and Miranda Jones. Having her close friend and Dear Evan Hansen co-star for a couple of duets, and then her daughter for some Harry Styles, was more than just an opportunity for entertaining her audience, it was a chance for Rachel to play with her family. Thompson and Jones clearly have a sisterly bond (and a shared humor that was front and center during a number about pets that this writer wouldn't dare spoil by describing) that informs every moment they share together, and Rachel and Miranda, as mother and daughter, share many traits, not the least of which is musical talent. As a singer, Miranda is working with a beautiful instrument and commitment to the lyrics, and it was most generous of Mama Rachel to let Miranda choose a song that resonated with her, and then to relinquish the main mic to her daughter, serving as harmonizing duet partner so that the moment belonged to Miranda, who clearly has something here. If the younger Jones so wishes, there is obviously a path for her as a singing artist - she's got the goods.

Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out

The family affair was not restricted to the women of the program last night, either: Rachel Bay Jones proudly stepped into the shadows so that her Musical Director and friend of many years, Randy Redd, might have a solo, as well, and it's a good thing, too, because a Mr. Redd is an artist and a person of almost unbearable appeal, which is probably why Rachel wanted to share him with her audience. Not content to leave anyone out, Rachel made sure to draw much attention to the contribution of guitarist Sean Harkness, who is the cabaret and concert musician this writer holds in highest esteem, and whose work last night met his usual standards of excellence. Indeed, every musical moment from every person who participated in the Rachel Bay Jones show at Feinstein's brought their A-Game, but at the end of the day it is all about Rachel Bay Jones, and that's what makes the program special. Because she is special, something this writer has known since March 30th, 2009 at 5:57 pm. That is when, urged by my friend Vince Gatton, I purchased the album ShowFolk on iTunes and downloaded it into my device. That is how long I have been a devoted fan, one that has watched this special woman go from ShowFolk to Hair to Pippin to Dear Evan Hansen to any number of important film and television roles, with a few notable award pick-ups along the way. But this was the first Rachel Bay Jones concert for me, and it was, so, worth the wait.

Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out Thank goodness for Feinstein's/54 Below for giving these unique women that play characters on Broadway a place to display the beautiful and individual real-life women that they are for the fans who want, deeply, to see who is behind the characters. As, one by one, these women play the basement of 54 Below, their fanbase grows and their artistry becomes more widely spread, and women like Rachel Bay Jones need to be heard, need to be observed, because, with their artistry, they make life a little more bearable. That's what Rachel did last night.

Picture it: it's the hottest day of the year, everyone in New York City is unhappy, and Rachel Bay Jones is giving a living room concert at 54 Below. To get there, a person has to go out into the hateful heat and deal with New York City sidewalks, subways, and swarms... but once there, the torture of summertime in New York dissipates, as one languishes in something that feels like sitting on a back porch at twilight, a cool breeze caressing the skin, and an ice-cold drink in one hand, relaxing as the gentle sounds of nightfall cascade, all around. That's Rachel Bay Jones, all over the place: a gentle, joyful, relaxing way to end a long week and a long day, and a surefire guarantee of a peaceful night of rest when home, satisfied, and happy once more.

Rachel Bay Jones will perform at 54 Below at 7 pm on June 18th (that's tonight) - for information and reservations visit the 54 Below website HERE.

THIS is the Rachel Bay Jones Facebook page and HERE is the Rachel Bay Jones Twitter page. Instagramers can find Rachel Bay Jones HERE.

Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out

Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out

Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out

Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out

Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out

Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out

Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out

Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out

Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out

Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out

Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out

Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out

Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out Review: RACHEL BAY JONES Gives Feinstein's/54 Below Crowd A Chill Night Out

Photos by Stephen Mosher


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From This Author - Stephen Mosher