RD & TBC at Something Jazz Club, NYC
Review by Carol Daly, Performer — performance on 6/20/14
I had the pleasure of seeing Rhonda Denet and The Bad Cats, the four skillful musicians who accompanied her last Friday evening at Something Jazz Club in NYC. Rhonda started off the set almost demure with a hint of shyness. She began singing the words “ My World My Dream My Song -I have all it takes to be strong- I believe and so it shall be.” And we do believe her and the many stories which inspired all the original songs in this show. “Stepping into to the sunrise of my life -if I didn’t know better would have walked out in my own life” she continues in her opening song “My World, My Dream, My Song.” From the start we can relate to what she is saying in all of its vulnerability and humanity. The song, “Still with Me” expresses deep appreciation for Rhonda’s friend who lost her life without warning. It is a heartfelt remembrance of this dear friend and an affirmation of her eternal presence.
Rhonda takes us on a journey of life filled with pain, beauty, longing, love and being “Perfectly Human,” urging us to “keep our heads up” as she does. She tells us we’re perfectly human just as we are and again we believe her and savor the moment. In “Destiny” she’s singing a love letter to the person she desires and shares it with us saying “You arrived just in time. You’re my destiny.” Ms. Denet sings it to him right in front of us with unabashed innocence and driving conviction. And if you think she doesn’t mean business, wait until “Here I Am” a sassy, vibrant, sultry take-me-as-I-am-or-not bluesy song.
This is a singer among singers, a tour de force with a resonant, deep, beautiful, confident voice that comes from the depths of her life, and from her life experiences. One is reminded of Aretha Franklin. She is in her own words transparent and allows us see just who she is. She drives her notes further and further, deeper and deeper, she wails and as Walt Whitman said “Sing(s) the Body Electric.” She makes us see the beauty and electricity, spark and fire in ourselves.
This lady has a beautiful pair of ears, an impressive range, relaxed, powerful belt and impeccable timing as she brings to a close with breathy finely syncopated sounds the song “Ooh Yeah.” “Soulgasmic” love modulates three or four times all perfectly executed by Ms. Denet and winding to a melodic wailing end. The words in the closing song “Give your heart because it’s a gift” were Rhonda’s expression of gratitude for us as well as her way of reminding us of the beauty in us (in case we temporarily forgot) Rhonda Denet made a choice to 10 years ago to pursue her dream as a singer/songwriter and we’re glad that she did!
If you are reading this because you are considering hiring Rhonda, let us save you some time: DO IT.
Rhonda and her musicians are one of the best things to happen to our wedding [June 2011]. They are spectacular. They’re not just a “wedding band”. It’s like having a LIVE concert at your wedding.
They created the perfect blend of music that fit into the background as people ate and talked, and then turned up the volume playing hits that had everyone on the dance floor. A few of our friends are professional musicians too, and they were practically bowing down to Rhonda when she sang. Our guests were a range of cool young people to older family members – and everyone’s response was, “That was the best band EVER.”
We can’t say enough how meaningful their performance was to us. We originally gave them a long list of our favorite songs, and expected to only hear a few. Well, they played nearly all of them. And they are the NICEST people too. You could really tell that they love music and they love playing together, which means a lot when it’s your wedding. Working with good people is so important. We even had some guests inquire about hiring her for their upcoming weddings, and wanted to get on her mailing list to hear her play around the city (you should do that, too).
We also requested at least 45 minutes of Jewish music for the hora, and they played that perfectly. We were SO impressed, and the hora was so much fun.
We could not be more grateful to Rhonda, and we give her our highest recommendation. If she is playing your wedding, get psyched. It’s going to be a great party.
Phenomenal Wedding Singer!
Leta & Bobby White — Married June 12, 2011 in Franklin Square, NY
Rhonda Denet and her keyboard player performed at our wedding. Their performance was phenomenal!! Rhonda also sang for our cocktail hour. All of our guests raved about her voice. She sang R & B love songs, they did a duet and sang jazz tunes during the cocktail hour. She also sang a gospel song, which she rearranged and learned. She did a splendid job. Rhonda honored all of my requests.
My husband and I still hear her lovely voice everytime we reminisce of our wedding. We deeply appreciate her devotion to her gift and helping us make our wedding day most memorable. We will surely summons her for our future affairs. Thank you Rhonda for your wonderful services!! Bobby and Leta White.
From Martini Cocoa, blogger on UNEMPLOYMENT CAFE, June 12, 2007
…when I want to listen to music, I have Mr. Beer’s vinyl collection, an iPod and local musicians for my listening pleasure.
A few Saturdays ago, Mr. Beer and I stopped into Le Grand Dakar and caught The Rhonda Denet Project performing.
Rhonda and her band have to be heard to be believed. Covers. Original songs. Rhonda can do it all. They completely justify my reason for bypassing the radio and videos.