"Haul out the holly," Michael Feinstein sang.
We're getting a private show from a great American singer. It's a small glimpse of what to expect form Michael Feinstein at the iconic nightclub '54 Below.'
“Nightclubs are a place where the entertainment experience is different than any other venue because it is the most interactive with the audience,” Feinstein explained.
The multi-platinum selling and Grammy-nominated artist is celebrating 30 years of performing in New York.
“When I sing a lot of these classic songs, I think about the composers because I was lucky enough to meet a lot of them,” he said.
Feinstein worked as an assistant for the legendary lyricist Ira Gershwin and was introduced to icons like Frank Sinatra.
“Having been lucky enough to know Frank Sinatra, it’s incumbent personally to me to continue his legacy, not that he needs me to do it," he laughed. "It’s just that, I wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for Frank Sinatra.”
Memories and personal connections like this shine through during his shows.
"Being connected to the text and telling a story in that way is part of my mission in interpreting music," Feinstein explained. "Also keeping alive a tradition that is unique to our country.”
Feinstein is a well-know, long-time dedicated proponent of 'The Great American Songbook.'
“The thing about these songs is that they can be twisted and turned and screwed around with and they still sound great,” he smiled.
And he is doing his part in passing along this music to new generations.
“A few years ago I started the Great American Songbook Foundation, [and] to be able to nurture young talent is one of the most important things I could ever do because it keeps it going. It keeps alive something that otherwise will disappear if there aren't advocates for it.”
“Returning to the stage, Mr. Michael Feinstein,” the announcer said during Feinstein's Monday night show.
This week's a new chapter for the 59 year old, he kicked off his 10 day holiday show. And making it all the more special is he's doing it as what now called 'Feinstein's/54 Below.'
“It’s lovely for me because for 14 years I had a nightclub, Feinstein’s at the Regency, and it’s nice to be back in the game, in this location,” he smiled.
Feinstein is performing now until December 30 but will continue to have multiple shows each year as part of his new partnership with 'Feinstein's/54 Below.'