The Alabama Theatre at Barefoot Landing in Myrtle Beach, SC is giving away six CDs in honor of The Midtown Men’s concert on Saturday, February 25th! Click here to visit their Facebook page – just leave a comment for your chance to win.
Still looking for that perfect Christmas or Hanukkah gift? Look no further, Midtown Men fans!
TICKETS ARE ON SALE FOR THE MIDTOWN MEN’S RETURN TO B.B. KING BLUES CLUB IN NEW YORK CITY!
If you were fortunate enough to be in the house for the May 2016 show, then you know what I mean when I say that this venue is the perfect showcase for TMM’s talents! The room was alive with energy from start to well past the finish of what was a totally exhilarating show – and I have no doubt that it will be so again on January 8th!
Get your tickets while they last, because you do not want to miss this awesome opportunity.
Click here for tickets and information.
A concert review by TMM Superfan, Debby Baker
On April 9, The Midtown Men found a sweet home in Alabama for their first visit to Anniston.
From the first note of “Big Girls Don’t Cry” to the last note of “Bye Bye Baby,” the Men had the crowd in the palm of their hands.The minute MM hit the stage, the energy level went off the charts and stayed there. Michael jumped up and down with excitement, Christian grinned and waved at the crowd, Daniel made eye contact with fans and Bobby smoothly welcomed the audience. It was our 13th concert and it was like we were back with dear friends who just happen to be amazing artists.
The group kicked off the show with a medley of two songs from Jersey Boys – “Big Girls Don’t Cry” and “Sherry” – complete with choreography. It was a great way of reminding the audience of the MM’s Jersey Boys pedigree.The medley was followed by familiar performances of “Can’t Buy Me Love,” “Happy Together” and “Ain’t That Peculiar.” No matter how many times we hear them perform, the guys make each song sound special and fresh.
Between numbers, the group members introduced themselves and bantered with each other, just like brothers. Their camaraderie and obvious affection for each other add layers of fun to every performance. You never know what they will say or do. One night, Bobby re-tied Daniel’s shoelaces – while Daniel was singing! I’m sure it took a herculean effort on Daniel’s part not to lose it.
It never ceases to amaze me how Daniel can perform “Cry for Me” night after night and still make it heart-wrenching and thrilling. When he drops down to that knee, you can actually hear people gasp.We were thrilled with new arrangements – especially “Daydream” by Christian. In fact, there were several musical tweaks that brought freshness to familiar songs. It was also nice to have the MM band spotlighted in many numbers. It’s a joy to watch those magnificent musicians during the show – they are obviously having fun.
Other recent additions include “Wouldn’t It Be Nice” by Michael, “Galveston” by Bobby and “Got to Get You Into My Life” by Christian.
Later in the show, Michael absolutely slayed his rendition of the Righteous Brothers classic, “Unchained Melody,” leaving the crowd screaming at the end. I must admit this song isn’t a favorite of mine, perhaps because I heard it so much after it was featured in the movie Ghost, but Michael brought it to life in spell-binding fashion. He made me love that song again.In fact, Michael was delightful throughout the show, giving an extra spark to everything – interpreting his numbers beautifully, adding zest to the choreography and engaging the crowd.
In a break from tradition, there was no intermission. The guys took a break while the band performed its entertaining medley of 1960s TV show themes, and then returned for the second half of the show, beginning with the always-fun MM classic, “Get Ready.”That was followed by crowd favorites such as “Time of the Season,” “Vehicle” and “Groovin.”
Two relatively new songs, “For What It’s Worth” and “In My Life,” packed a real punch. Christian’s performance of “For What It’s Worth” brought back memories of the turbulent 1960s and sadly reinforced the fact that we face the same challenges today. Bobby’s rendition of “In My Life” by the Beatles struck a deep chord as it expanded the listener’s understanding of how love of every kind enriches our lives. I get teary-eyed every time I hear this song now, thanks to Bobby.
Knowing just the right time to switch gears, the guys launched into a crowd favorite and one of the highlights of the show, “The Motown Medley.” Their choreography is always stellar, but it totally rocked in this compilation of “Ain’t Too Proud,” “I Want You Back,” “I Second That Emotion,” “My Girl,” “Just My Imagination” and “You’re All I Need to Get By.” The minute the guys began those incredible dance moves, the crowd went crazy.
It was almost the end of the show, and still the MM were giving it their all – true trademarks of consummate entertainers. The show came to a close with the audience on its feet and singing along to “Oh, What a Night,” clear evidence the MM had scored another triumph.
The Midtown Men genuinely love and appreciate every single one of their supporters, and they never fail to make sure they know it. These guys quickly become more than favorite singers – they become friends. As we were saying goodbye to Bobby, we told him we’d see them again in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, in May – a six-hour drive one way for us. With a look of surprise on his face, he exclaimed, “Why?!?”“Because we love you guys,” we said, to which he replied, “But still – why!?” That speaks volumes to the humbleness of these amazing performers. They do it for the love of the music and the opportunity to perform it together. The fact that they have fans who love and appreciate them is almost an extra perk for them.
We can’t say it enough – if The Midtown Men are appearing anywhere in your vicinity, don’t miss them. You can thank me later.
Debby And Dan Baker, LaGrange, Georgia
For the past six years, Michael Longoria has endeared himself to TMM audiences across the country as the “short, adorable tenor” who can “fit in your purse.” We’ve loved his soaring falsetto, antics on stage, and warm greetings after shows. As a member of the Midtown Men, he is a talented, kind and genuine person in a group filled with talented, kind, and genuine guys. Now, he is stepping out on his own and releasing a solo album titled Broadway Brick By Brick. This album traces his journey from childhood to the present, as he attempts to rediscover the dreams that led him down the path to this moment. He generously invites us to share in that journey, and by doing so, we really get to know him as an individual.
Of course, those of us who love TMM and have been to their concerts know that Michael was born in Hollywood, started singing before he could talk, went to NYU, and joined the Broadway casts of Hairspray and Jersey Boys. These facts provide the most basic framework, but with this album, he opens his heart and uses classic Broadway songs to tell intimate stories from his past. He combines this creative structure with powerhouse vocals within gorgeous orchestrations. And the result is most amazing.
This past week, I was fortunate enough to preview the entire album and spend some time talking with Michael about it. I have loved Broadway and show tunes for decades; I have heard my share of compilation albums, and more covers than I can count. I can tell you that this album is so much more than that. This is not simply a “CD of Broadway songs” per se, but rather a very emotional story told through song. In fact, Michael’s life story could almost be a Broadway show itself, with a synopsis that might read something like this:
‘There was once a small Mexican-American boy with immense talent and specific, improbable dreams of performing on Broadway. He faced unique challenges, but with some guardian angels and an intense work ethic, he triumphed and realized those dreams, ultimately starring in a hit Broadway show.’
Sharing Michael’s journey through these songs was very engaging, not only because of his story but also because the music took me on my own journey, back to the first time I fell in love with Broadway. As he says, “Music is a powerful expression of emotion.”
Through his music and our conversation, I learned a lot about the person that I have seen on stage so many times through the years. As I anticipated, he is open and honest, funny and kind, insightful and forthcoming. We shared some stories, some laughs, and at the end of the day, I can say that I know Michael better as a person and artist, largely because I have a better understanding of the experiences that shaped him.
But why create an album that is so personal? Sure, artists create art every day that presumably includes a part of their journey woven through throughout, but most often the personal sources of inspiration remain unknown to the audience. To come across someone willing to bare his soul and share so many details of his life with an audience is rare. To explain, Michael points to a lyric in “As If We Never Said Goodbye” and describes how “I came out to NYC alone, and because of that it kind of made me not want to let people get too close to me because I was used to living in my own world alone and surviving on my own. So the line ‘I don’t want to be alone…that’s all in the past’ really speaks to this moment now. (I’ve realized that) I don’t want to be an artist that nobody gets to know; I want to tell my truth. I want people to really (understand) my experience though my art. And I feel like this is the moment to do it. This is my time to get that out there finally and not be alone, and take that chance.”
Broadway music is the perfect choice to tell Michael’s story, as Broadway has been the dream all along. A self-described “theater geek” in his younger years, someone who just wanted to “sing songs and tap dance,” he is going back to his roots to reawaken that original dream. He says “The reason I came out here (to NYC) was to chase Broadway, so I wanted to have that representation on this album. I wanted it all to be Broadway because that’s really who I was when I came out here, and I think the best way to find myself again is to search for myself in those songs.”
To that end, Michael has chosen some Broadway classics that speak to his heart and represent significant times in life. He sets the stage for us in a little house in the Pomona Valley, California (“Home”). To capture what music sounded like to him when he was small, he sings the most unique and beautiful arrangement of “The Sound of Music” I’ve ever heard, with Latin vibes and some lyrics in Spanish that harken back to his days as a child mariachi singer. He was introduced to Broadway music at the age of 10, while eating his grandmother’s tamales on Christmas Eve. West Side Story was on television, and Tony was singing “Maria.” Enough said. The album then takes us through his adolescence, a time when he felt like the black sheep in his family (“Music and the Mirror”), as well as his move to NYC to attend NYU Tisch School of the Arts (“The Impossible Dream). We then experience his post-college days: paying his dues as a singing waiter (“Corner of the Sky”), earning his big break as a swing in the Broadway cast of Hairspray (“As If We Never Said Good-bye”), originating the role of Joe Pesci in Jersey Boys, and eventually taking over the starring role of Frankie Valli (“Can’t Take My Eyes Off You”). He then takes us deeper as he explores his emotions surrounding the death of his beloved grandmother (“Tell Me on a Sunday”) and his past and present relationship with his parents (“Being Alive”), which were arguably the most emotional moments of the album. He also takes a moment to express his gratitude to those who helped guide him along the way (“Thank you for the Music”) before singing “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” from the perspective of someone who has triumphed in his goal of finding his true self. Yes, these are all very well known songs, but it would be a mistake for anyone to think that because of that, they know what this album sounds like. He says, “The goal was to not just sing these songs like they’ve been done in the past and will be done in the future, but to really take the perspective as if I’m the first person singing them and they’re about my life.” The end result, in my opinion, is wonderful, unique, and anything but predictable.
Michael has also had time over the last months to reflect on multiple meanings behind the songs. For example, he points to “As If We Never Said Goodbye” and how “I just love how it not only represents my time in Hairspray but how it also represents the experience with this CD. I’ve been away from Broadway for so long, touring all over with the Midtown Men, which has been amazing and (such a) great learning experience that I hope continues, but this is my moment to come back to Broadway. Not on the stage necessarily, but just back to my heart. Singing these songs and remembering the passion of that 17-year-old boy who came out here on his own, it helps me and motivates me to continue forward and to not just exist.”
Finally, I would be remiss to write this article without a commentary on Michael’s vocals. Of course, he has performed show-stopping solos with the Midtown Men, in city after city. But the songs on Broadway Brick by Brick allow us to access a range of his talent that 60’s music just can’t touch in the same way. If I had a nickel for every money note or amazing riff on this album, I would be very rich indeed. But in addition to those, it’s the softer, nuanced moments that have the most potential to rip your heart out. The beginnings of “Music and the Mirror,” “As If We Never Said Goodbye,” and “Tell Me on a Sunday,” for example, just communicate such clear emotion; it’s like he reaches out and grabs your heart and says, “Feel what I’m singing.” And you do.
This is a special album, and the artist who created it is pretty special as well. I hope you all take this opportunity to enjoy some classic Broadway songs in a new way, and in the process, get to know Michael better. Because to know him, is to love him.
“I hope people receive this album from my soul, and my heart. I want it to be something that is a true artistic expression of who I am.” -Michael Longoria, 2016
• Pre-order Broadway Brick By Brick by clicking here
• If you live near New York or Los Angeles, don’t miss Michael’s CD Release Concerts celebrating Broadway Brick By Brick:
- NYC on May 2-3, 2016 at 9:30pm at Joe’s Pub. Click here for tickets
- Los Angeles on June 7, 2016 at 8:00pm at Rockwell Table & Stage. Click here for tickets.
Category: Michael Longoria
2015 was a big year for The Midtown Men: a second fantastic PBS special, more symphony shows, national and regional television appearances, and a huge show at the Beacon in NYC. Not to mention dozens of concerts for old friends and new fans across the country.
Lucky for us, these are not guys who rest on their laurels; in fact, The Men have an even bigger 2016 ahead!
Coming up in April, The Men will travel to the Pacific Northwest before heading back down to Florida, with stops in a couple of southern states along the way.
Yes, exciting things are in store for OUR fab four and their fans, so be sure to check back here often for updates on where the Men have been, and where they are heading! And check out the concert calendar to find a show near you!
Comments are always welcome – in fact they are encouraged! And feel free to send along any pictures you want to share – firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hutch crowd captivated by Midtown Men’s ’60s magic
LYDIA LOWE, The Hutchinson News
The 1960s were alive and well this past Thursday night when the Midtown Men made a stop at the Fox Theatre in Hutchinson.
There was a lot of interest in this show from the time it was announced as part of the regular 2015/2016 season. This show did not disappoint. Opening to a sold-out audience, the Midtown Men wowed everyone with classic ’60s songs that appeared fresh and new, even though everyone in the audience knew all the words. Singing along was expected and encouraged.
I enjoyed the backdrops on the stage and the layout of the guitars, drums, brass instruments and keyboard. The outfits were vintage 1960s, complete with skinny ties. It was a class act through and through, as much fun to watch as to listen to.
A video screen at the back of the stage played a variety of vintage black-and-white video of various groups whose songs were being sung on stage as well as video of the Midtown Men at photo ops and on the streets of New York, which lent an air of fantasy and a Broadway feel to the overall production. Truly the audience was no longer in Kansas anymore.
When the music started back up after the break, people left whatever line they were in, be it concessions or bathrooms, to return to the auditorium and their seats. No one wanted to miss a single note that was played or sung on the stage. The Midtown Men had captivated the crowd.
At the end of the evening, the Midtown Men exited to the lobby to sign autographs, meet and greet the patrons, and take photos with anyone who requested one. Even with an early departure time the following day, the group stayed until the last person left the lobby.
The Midtown Men have several private performances lined up after their show at the Fox Theatre. The next performance planned for general audiences is on Dec. 15 in Avon Park, Florida.
The Midtown Men kick off a big week of concerts all over the Midwest – starting with tonight’s show in Green Bay!
Click here to watch the video.
Daniel Reichard took some time to tell Patrick Mares (of the Scene – Northeast Wisconsin’s monthly arts and entertainment newspaper) how The Midtown Men got where they are today and why it’s worth your time to check them out when they swing by the Green Bay Weidner Center on October 27.
Here is an excerpt from that interview:
SCENE: Give us a pitch. Tell us why our readers need a little Midtown Men in their lives.
Daniel R: I look out over our audiences every day. And I’ve seen them transform over the course of an evening. I see their bodies change and their faces change and their expressions light up. Our show is a nice escape from the tough world these days. You’re going to hear a broad range of songs, so it’s a full course meal as far as music from the 1960’s. We like to think of ourselves as striving to be a modern day Rat Pack. Guys that dress up in nice suits, goof around a lot, but when it comes time to sing, we really give it all we’ve got. And that’s what people can expect. It’s an old-fashioned show business experience.
Click here to read the article in its entirety (and find out which Scooby Doo character Daniel assigned to each of them!)