Tapestry Rewoven Plugged! - Elizabeth Ahlfors
Laurie Krauz and Daryl Kojak
Cafe Noctambula at Pangea
178 - 2nd Avenue, NYC
November 7, 2015, 7pm and 9pm.
Review by Elizabeth Ahlfors
Plugged or unplugged, Laurie Krauz and Daryl Kojak's passion and dedication shines through Tapestry Rewoven, their creative reimaging of Carole King's '60's pop classic, Tapestry. At the intimate Cafe Noctambula at Pangea, Krauz and Kojak brought in the program unplugged, no jazz band, no backup singers. What remained was the soul and creative mingling of imagination, rhythm and yes, memories.
Hers is a voice that soars, scoops, growls and whispers. When the earth moves in Krauz's opening song, it not only moves through her vocals and interpretation, it moves in and around the room. Every word is vital and the emotions behind the music are clear and communicative. "It's Too Late" hums with honesty and "Smackwater Jack" adds Carole King's Brooklyn punch of ironic red-neck humor.
Krauz is a master using and controlling the microphone and is someone many singers might study. One example is early in the show when she ends "So Far Away" with a sky-high note, moving her mic so far away that the tone fade into infinity. It was sheer beauty.
Her longtime accompanist, co-creator and arranger of Tapestry Rewoven, Daryl Kojak on piano, matches the moods of the songs, adding imaginative support such as the bluesy opening to "Home Again," mirroring the loneliness of her voice with distinct chords and roaming fingerwork. He adds a jazz-Latin rhythm as Krauz fearlessly promises "Where You Lead," fiercely building to a breathless passion. Together, they deliver vulnerability and strength in these songs that formed a tapestry of their times, weaving together the music and zeitgeist of the era.
Included is Krauz' coming of age days in college, when she first heard Carole King's music. With great humor, casual stage presence and easy patter, she reveals the influence Tapestry had on her, song by song, year by year -- why "You've Got a Friend" remains a favorite today and stories from the dorm listening to "Smackwater Jack." Through the years, Krauz' own experiences and musicianship helped form Tapestry Rewoven into not only a remarkable voice of the time, but a voice for women.
"I didn't actually come up with the idea." she says. "The idea came up with me!" Krauz, however, was savvy enough to join Kojak for the process of reweaving and creating unique jazz interpretations and delivering them with quintessential style.