Following up…

… on my Three Guys to Keep an Eye On piece a few weeks back, I want to toss another name onto the “emerging standards performer watch list”. Earlier this week I got intro’d to a new talent — JB Baretsky — who’s working his way onto the standards scene.

JB is an interesting guy, with an interesting vocal style that lands somewhere between Bobby Darin and Elvis. He’s got this kinda cool trailing tremolo … an affectation that I’m guessing people will either love or hate. Put me down on the plus side … it’s growing on me.

His vocals are a bit rough in spots to be sure, but the kid is young. I get the sense from listening to his stuff up YouTube way (JB’s Channel), that he’s still dialing things in and finding out which material maps best to his distinctive vocal style.

Like Bobby D, Baretsky is a genre bender pushing out a mix of demo recordings … lots of classic standards like “Mack the Knife”, “That’s Life” and “Summer Wind” … some pop-rock numbers like “Runaround Sue” and “Last Kiss” … even a cover of Taio Cruz’s “Dynamite”. Wild huh?

The kid has been working a variety of live performance gigs including a Lincoln Center event this past year. He seems to be an effervescent live performance talent that truly enjoys entertaining — again a lot like Bobby Darin, as well as another one of JB’s inspirations — Sammy Davis Jr.

No fear … go hard.

I read where JB’s uncle was struck down by Louis Gehrig’s disease (ALS) and that this horrible event instilled a “life’s short … might as well get after it” mentality that drives Mr. Baretsky. I’m glad JB’s been able to translate what is a horrific thing (my dad was also taken by ALS) into life affecting motivation. Ride it as far as you can man.

More Please…

Yeah, it’s easy for me to say. But hey, there’s not much Baretsky material out there so I’m saying it! From what I understand, he’s working to get an album released this Spring after a busy performance schedule this holiday season.

JB’s just really getting started, but he’s doing all the right things to put himself in the mix and I look forward to seeing and hearing more from JB Baretsky.

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