Heather DeLuca - 95.1 WAYV

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Don't Call Me Debbie

So since it's technically still the Big 80's Weekend on WAYV, I shouldn't catch TOO much flack for what I am about to reveal.

I spent my Saturday night in a hip little club in lower Manhattan's SoHo district called The Canal Room. Saturday's they do a Big 80's dance party. Last night they had a special performance by the original 80's Pop Princess. That's right, I'm talking about Deborah "don't call me Debbie" Gibson. I am not ashamed to admit that I drove two hours to NYC, got stuck in Holland Tunnel traffic and spent close to $100 for this show. I was the 13 year old loser who plastered her room floor to ceiling (and actually a bit of the ceiling as well) with pics of The Debster from magazines like Bop and 16. I had the black bowler hat, the torn-knee jeans and converse sneaks. I knew every word of every song on Out of The Blue and Electric Youth. The goody-two-shoes image fit me perfectly.

I saw Deb on the Electric Youth Tour in 89 at the Philly Spectrum. My ma was nice enough to take me but made it well known that was THE LAST place she wanted to be. That was the only time I ever saw Debbie Gibson live since there weren't any other chances after her recording career skidded to a halt.

Debbie has continued to record both pop and Broadway albums since her stint as an 80's teen act. And YES, I own them all. I like that she never gave up putting material out there even though she wasn't quite the popular one anymore.

Last nights Canal Room show started rocky for me. Standing room only with RABID fans the likes of which I have never seen for an artist. She got on stage about 40 minutes past schedule and proceeded to belt out Broadway tune after Broadway tune. That's really NOT my thing, but she sounded AMAZING. Broadway has actually made her voice STRONGER and given her more range. Thankfully after a 10 minute break Deb hit the stage in jeans and a gold top and gave the crowd the show they really came to see. "Only In My Dreams" and "Foolish Beat" didn't come across as even remotely childish, even though she was 16 when she recorded the tunes. She even rocked-up a version of "Electric Youth" in grundge fashion to hear how it would have sounded if released in the 90's rather the 80's. All in all I was close enough to almost touch her. It was a very intimate setting for with an impressive audience. She doesn't perform her contemporary music anymore since she moved to the stages of musical theater. So it was cool watch her resurrect "Lost In Your Eyes" etc., and see her cover Carol King and Hall and Oats along the way.

Laugh if you will but I am glad I went!



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