Billy Stritch Big Birdland Birthday Bash!
February 11 @ 9:30 pm - 11:00 pm
Renowned singer/pianist and Birdland favorite Billy Stritch celebrates a very big birthday with a very special engagement in the Birdland Theater. Join Billy and his stellar sidemen Tom Hubbard on bass and Eric Halvorson on drums for five great shows featuring Billy’s unique mix of songs from the jazz canon and the great American songbook.
Billy’s most recent solo engagement at Birdland back in August of last year prompted Stanford Friedman of Front Row Center to rave “Stritch plays the piano so effortlessly that it is hard to believe the intricate melodies emanating from the stage are originating from his fingertips, even as you are looking right at him. This is not to say that he performs on automatic. Rather, it suggests that he is in possession of a seriously impressive skillset which allows his subconscious to tickle the ivories while he is otherwise focused on his vocals.” Of the same show, Ricky Pope of BroadwayWorld raved “Billy Stritch has always embodied a suave elegance that evokes another era before tuxedos were replaced by ripped jeans and before cocktail hour was replaced by Netflix binges. His encyclopedic knowledge of The Great American Songbook is prodigious. He not only knows all the songs, he knows the history of them all. He is as stylish as the great pianists of that era: Oscar Peterson, Marion McPartland, Teddy Wilson, Art Tatum, and Dave Grusin. He is the upholder of a tradition that includes Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra, Barbra Striesand, Doris Day and Mel Tormé.”
In this new set you can expect Billy to include more personal favorites from his award winning livestream series “Billy’s Place” and perhaps a special guest or two might show up to join in the birthday fun!
Billy Stritch is one of the premier singer-pianists on the New York and national jazz and cabaret scenes. He began his career in Houston, Texas, where he formed the vocal trio Montgomery, Plant and Stritch. The trio performed all over New York and Europe from 1983 until they disbanded in 1990. A chance meeting with Liza Minnelli in March of 1991 resulted in her asking him to create vocal arrangements for the record-breaking extravaganza Liza Stepping Out at Radio City Music Hall. In addition to his 25-year collaboration with as accompanist and opening act for Liza, Billy recently toured with the legendary Tony Bennett as Tony’s pianist and musical director. A solo entertainer in his own right, he has performed his own shows (including tributes to Mel Tormé and Cy Coleman) in concert halls and nightclubs across the country. Billy also serves as music director for such leading vocalists as Linda Lavin, Marilyn Maye, Linda Eder, Christine Ebersole and Paulo Szot. He is the co-writer of the number one Grammy-winning song “Does He Love You” recorded by Reba McEntire and Linda Davis. Lightning struck twice for this song as a new version was released in 2021 by Reba and the legendary Dolly Parton. When he’s not on the road, he is the pianist for Jim Caruso’s Cast Party open mic night every Monday at New York’s legendary Birdland Jazz Club and he and Jim hold forth on Sunday nights at Bemelmans’ Bar in Manhattan’s fabled Carlyle Hotel. During Covid-19, he created his own weekly Facebook live-stream show “Billy’s Place”, celebrating the Great American Songbook with songs and stories from his varied career. He has recorded five solo CDs and his latest CD release “Billy’s Place” (Club44 Records) is a collection of his favorite songs from these online concerts.
Follow Billy on Instagram @billystritch.