Manhattan Transfer, winner of 10 Grammys and by far one of the most popular acts ever to play Cranston’s Park Theatre, return for one show only on Saturday, April 5 at 8 p.m. The four members are all accomplished singers in their own right and have kept the tradition of Manhattan Transfer alive for 40 years.
I spoke to member Alan Paul as he was driving into Hollywood to teach a master class, one of his many interests. He is also a popular solo artist and has also recorded and performed around the world.
“We call our new show ‘The Living Room Sessions’” he said. “It is an acoustic retrospective celebrating 40 years of spectacular performances. We’ll be backed by a piano and bass and include some slides and an intimate approach to the music.
“We’ll do our biggest hits, plus some lesser known songs. The emphasis will be on our intricate harmonies. We’ll break it down and give examples of how we structure our arrangements.”
I reminded him that they had sold out the Park Theatre last year and were sure to do the same this year. (Get your tickets if you haven’t already).
Did he remember their first recordings?
“I think they were ‘Java Jive’ and ‘Operator,’” he said.
These were two of the numbers performed recently at Warwick’s Ocean State Theatre Company’s production of “All Night Strut,” which Alan remembered seeing years ago.
Manhattan Transfer will be playing a number of dates in the East on this brief tour.
“In the fall, we travel to Europe and Asia and then do a big Christmas tour in the States,” he said.
But for now, it is Cranston and a rare chance to see the best in harmonic music, a style that has never been recreated. For tickets call 467-7275.