David Giuntoli: Sinatra—The Man and His Music

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David Giuntoli

Sinatra—The Man and His Music

Davenport’s, Chicago, IL, August 5, 2017

Reviewed by Carla Gordon for Cabaret Scenes

David Giuntoli

Ring-a-ding-ding. Hailing from Manchester, Missouri, handsome David Giuntoli visited Davenport’s with Sinatra—The Man and His Music to channel Frank Sinatra with an easy smile and warm personality. He had personal stories to share about his “old neighborhood” Chicago connections.
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His affection for Sinatra is passionate and palpable. Recalling a club manager who fired the then-young Ol’ Blue Eyes for being “lousy,” Giuntoli offered “All or Nothing at All.” Citing one of Sinatra’s last concerts, he sang a swingy jazz version of “The Best Is Yet to Come.” He struggled with the tempo in “I’ve Got You Under My Skin,” but ultimately managed Nelson Riddle’s iconic arrangement.
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While Giuntoli seems to prefer Sinatra’s jazzier numbers, such as “Luck Be a Lady,” which transitioned well into “The Lady Is a Tramp,” a particular highlight of his show was the simply delivered ballad “Angel Eyes.” He shared how Sinatra did not sing the verse of one song with which he has been most associated—“In Other Words.” (Yep, the one everybody calls “Fly Me to the Moon.”) While he invited the audience to sing along to “Ain’t That a Kick in the Head,” the choice was less effective than it would have been on a song with which the audience had been more familiar. When an audience member shouted out “New York, New York!
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” (the them for the movie of the same name), David’s sidemen quickly stepped to the plate playing the song for a delighted and participatory group.

As Giuntoli continues his cabaret journey, he has a few challenges to address. Sometimes there are pitch problems, especially on extended high notes. In spite of excellent musicians, there were timing issues, especially as songs began. No doubt, practice and experience will help him overcome these concerns.
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Perhaps a case of nerves was involved, but it was oddly inappropriate to say that the 70-ish minute show would have been longer, but Davenport’s needed the space for another program. The length of the show is fine. It is also customary to thank the club and the technical director.

Carla Gordon

Carla Gordon is a singer/songwriter, director, and producer. The Chicago Tribune cited her among “Chicago’s most accomplished cabaret performers….a major player in Chicago cabaret.” Reviewer Pam Peterson called her “Honey-voiced wisecracker!” Ageless Magazine called her performance as Sophie tucker, “A gem!” Gordon writes custom material for singers nationwide. Her flagship show, "Blacklisted," featuring songs made famous by artists blacklisted under McCarthyism, has toured to critical acclaim. She serves on the Board of Directors for the Chicago Cabaret Professionals and on the Advisory Board of the Skokie Theater. Her songs air on WFMT’s Midnight Special and are being performed performed by cabaret artists nationwide. carlacabaret@aol.com