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Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Exclusive Q&A with Cabaret Crooner David Meulemans

David Meulmans will return to the Metropolitan Room this Saturday, August 22, 2015, at 7pm. David is from Appleton, Wisconsin but now resides in Florida. We spoke by phone. Our conversation was great fun and I found David to be not only talented but thoughful, reflective and extremely articulate.

Buddy Beaverhausen: What can the uninitiated, like myself, expect from your show this weekend?
David Meulemans: You can expect the unexpected! Magic! The show is called "Lucky to Be Me," as I've been grateful lately for so many things, and it will be about that. We hope to entertain and also to have fun in the process.

BB: What kind of songs will "Lucky to Be Me" encompass?
DM: Classics from over the last 100 years or so, like "Pennies from Heaven" and "Life Is Just a Bowl of Cherries," but also more contemporary songs, a lot that people will know. A pretty good mix, all in all.

BB: You live in Fort Lauderdale, is that right?
DM: Yes. I'm down here at the beach.
BB: Oh, that's nice! Do you ever perform in Florida and, if so, do you find audiences differ there from those in the NYC area?
DM: That's a really good question. Most of my audiences here are retired New Yorkers. But I think the NY crowd likes a broader range of material, which we'll be doing, whereas the retired New Yorkers prefer music they're familiar with.

BB: What do you like to do when you come to NYC?
DM: I love visiting the City, going to shows, museums, restaurants, theater. I love seeing friends. I love seeing the work they do. 

BB: What type of music influenced you when you were growing up?
DM: I grew up in a house where my parents played a lot of 45s from the 1950s. Johnny Cash was played a lot. Then, I went off to music school and studied opera. I became a big fan of Broadway musicals. That's why cabaret appeals to me so much. I get to mix all the styles. At the Metropolitan Room I'll be running the gamut of different types and styles of music I love, It will be a very eclectic selection.

BB: How did your family encourage you as a musician?
DM: I'm not sure that they did. When I went off to music school, they thought I was crazy. They were concerned because they saw the impracticality of it. I've spent much of my adult life working in the corporate world. I would much rather be out singing.
BB: I just retired from my day job this year.
DM: How is it?
BB: I love it. Never been so busy.
DM: I'm looking forward to that point where my priorities can be more my own.

BB: Do you keep a place in NYC? Go to a hotel? Stay with friends?
DM: I like to stay at bed-and-breakfast guest houses in different neighborhoods. This time I'll be staying off Central Park West.
BB: Very nice!

BB: When you're not performing, how do you like to relax. 
DM: I love gardening out in my backyard. I find that relaxing. I grew up on a farm so I love planting And helping other performers get their acts together; I really enjoy that in my spare time.

BB: What was your favorite experience performing and what was the worst?
DM: I really think performing at the Metropolitan Room for the first time was my favorite. It wasn't the first venue I played in NYC but it was the most satisfying for me. I just had a gig in St. Louis where I opened for Christine Ebersole; that was a real highlight. The worst was a job delivering a singing telegram. That's all I'm going to tell you about that. 

BB: Any last shout-outs to our readers?
DM: Of course! Come see us perform at The Metropolitan Room. I have a terrific band I'm very proud of! Thanks to Richard Skipper for promoting our show, and thanks to our fans! See you 7pm this Saturday, August 22nd, at the Metropolitan Room!

Buddy Beaverhausen would also like to thank Mr. Skipper for arranging this interview. And I thank David for taking out the time to talk with me. Much luck on Saturday night; see you then! For reservations, please contact the Metropolitan Room, 212-206-0440 while seats are available.

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