On Wednesday night Josh, Dylan and I headed downtown to see actor, singer and songwriter Jay Brannan perform at Joe's Pub.
During the sold-out ninety-minute performance we sat at a table with a prime view of Jay—front row, just to the right of the stage—and promptly lamented not bringing a camera. We ate dinner while Jay played an entertaining and sometimes poignant show.
Jay's between-song banter was playful and self-depricating. He told stories about his recent performance in Israel and told us about a boy he just went on a date with who never called back. He also confessed that many of his song's lyrics are written directly from his life, which got a chorus of "awww" responses from the audience.
The crowd applauded as Jay began playing the first bars of "Soda Shop," his hit from the Shortbus soundtrack. He also played songs from this recent iTunes release "Unmastered," including "Body's A Temple" and "Half-Boyfriend," which Jay tried to play as the last song of the night. After leaving the stage, however, the audience's applause lasted so long that Jay came on and, by audience request, played "Housewife."
The funniest moment of the night came when Jay, declining to play "Happy Birthday" for two audience members, instead played a raucous cover of N.W.A.'s curse-laden controversial 1988 hip-hop hit "Straight Outta Compton," featuring a special rap interlude borrowed from a 1990s TLC hit, to wish them happy birthday. Priceless.
Below check out our Josh & Josh virtual Jay Brannan concert. To check Jay out in person visit his website for August performance dates in Philadelphia and New York City.
Body's A Temple
Straight Outta Compton
* American Idol champ Fantasia Barrino has signed on to continue playing the lead role of Celie in The Color Purple through January 6, 2008. Produced by Oprah and the Weinstein brothers, among others, the show is a can't miss with Fantasia in the title role. (Read the J&J review of The Color Purple)
* Wondering what Megan Mullally has been doing since Will & Grace wrapped? After briefly hosting a daytime talk show last year, the former Karen Walker is set to hit Broadway this fall in Mel Brooks's new musical Young Frankenstein, based on the 1974 movie, opening in previews at the Hilton Theater on October 11, 2007 (which also happens to be National Coming Out Day). Featuring Tony Award winners Sutton Foster, Roger Bart, Shuler Hensley, and Andrea Martin (remember her as Hedwig's agent in John Cameron Mitchell's pre-Shortbus film Hedwig and the Angry Inch and as the outspoken aunt with the special lump in her neck in My Big Fat Greek Wedding?), the show sounds like it's worth checking out.
* Off-Broadway hit In the Heights closes this weekend after more than 200 performances. Why? It's preparing to move to Broadway for the 2007-2008 season, reports Heights co-producer Kevin Collum (Avenue Q). Josh and I definitely plan to see the show again when it hits Broadway next season. (Read our interview with Lin-Manuel Miranda, Height's star and creator.)