menopausebarbees
... the tales of two sisters

Dana lives in Seattle, and Tracie lives in Germany. We are businesswomen, writers and humorists. We write about life, dating, and today's modern women.

Met on a Monday, Married the Next Sunday and Stayed Together Fifty Years: Ms. Patti Austin in the Menopausebarbee Monday Spotlight

She can sing, she can sing, goodness gracious can she sing!

Her voice is like velvet, silky smooth, strong, delicate and sultry all at once.

I’m talking about the Grammy Award winning singer Ms. Patti Austin.

Thinking back on her concert with the WDR Big Band at the sold out Philharmonie Hall Friday not too long ago, I’m remembering my moments of befuddlement. And yes, I mean moments as in plural, for this happened a couple of times. The concert featured the songs of the late great Cole Porter. My confusion happened at certain moments during Patti’s renditions when I couldn’t distinguish her voice from the note being played on the trombone. They were fused. I honestly couldn’t tell where one instrument started and the other stopped. This not only held me spellbound, it amazed me. She told me that her father, a jazz musician, had encouraged her as a young girl of 4 years of age to sing what she heard as he played the trombone.

Indeed, her love of music did begin at a very early age. Her doting parents who met on a Monday, married the next Sunday and stayed together fifty years, were very hands on, never allowed her to have a baby sitter and constantly encouraged her creativity. Music was played from the moment she woke up until she went to bed at night and she got it all – from Stravinsky to Ellington to Patsy Kline.

An average day saw a little Patti playing in the garage, which had been renovated into her playhouse, with her dolls and toys, singing along to the songs from her parents’ vast music collection –her favorites were hits from Broadway shows, like ‘Kiss Me Kate’ and ‘Guys and Dolls’. She was no bigger than a doll herself at the time! Think about that!

Patti studied opera between the ages of seventeen and twenty – that’s about the extent of her formal training so one can safely say that she is simply vocally blessed. She surely works at it, but she is nonetheless blessed. She is also fortunate to have had among her mentors, the one and only Ms. Dinah Washington, Sammy Davis Jr. and Menopausebarbee uncle music maestro Quincy Jones.

Whether it be Rhythm & Blues, Pop, Soul, Jazz, or classical music, Patti delivers, crossing all the music genres and she doesn’t just sing songs – she interprets the lyrics in such a way that you believe her when she sings. She puts what I call that ‘Patti Pizzazz’ on it. And thankfully she needs neither theatrics nor stage woo hah to distract you from savouring her talents. It’s a purely pleasurable experience.

 

One of the kindest and most engaging people you’ll ever meet, I asked Patti what message she’d like to share with our Menopausebarbee readers and she said, “Be who you are because you are magnificent. . . Women can only spread goodness and kindness. . . We have got to get inside ourselves and understand the power we can truly have over people. . . We shouldn’t just raise our children, we must elevate them.”

Amen to that.

You can see a recent posting on youtube of Ms. Austin’s interview talking about her recent project here in Cologne at the Philharmonie Hall with the WDR Big Band. Type in ‘Patti Webster interview Patti Sings Porter’ and you’re there.

I would highly recommend getting your Monday off to a good start and youtube her singing one of my favorites, ‘Quincy Jones featuring Patti Austin Razzamatazz’ .

While you’re at it just go ahead and get your groove on with ‘Betcha Wouldn’t Hurt Me’ and then you must listen to her duet with James Ingraham – that classic love ballad ‘Baby Come to Me’ and then there’s ‘Smoke Gets in Your Eyes’, ‘Anyway You Can’ and the list goes on and on.

Start your week off on a good note. Enjoy!