I have had quite a few moments of fabulous metropolitan culture in the last ten days or so: dancing until 3 at Habibi, the monthly bash for NYC’s gay Arab community (yes, really; the dance music, from Egypt Lebanon Syria et al, is fabulous, and the partygoers handsome); seeing Boeing Boeing on Broadway; Fleet Week. Oh, and the new Indiana Jones movie.
But none of them came close to seeing Greg play at the Duplex tonight. The crowd was tiny — me and Velma and Fred, a handful of drunken British tourists — so Greg got to make some calls that he might not have attempted for a fuller house. Including a whole lotta Kate Bush. He did “Wuthering Heights”; he did “Hounds of Love”; he did “Cloudbusting.” And then he went straight into “And Dream of Sheep,” which made me happy; and then he went straight from there into “Under Ice,” and we realized he was making some kinda banzai run through The Ninth Wave, and we didn’t know whether to fall out of our chairs from the shock or just howl with joy and laugh and wave our arms. Because Greg is a Kate Bush geek who plays a mean piano and has a lovely clear tenor voice and was fully capable of pulling something like this off. He did a quick here-are-the-highlights of “Waking the Witch,” he did “Watching You Without Me.” He went straight on into “Jig of Life.”
The other Kate fans in the room were in awe (and did all we could to throw in the umpty-leven other vocal bits). Those too young to know The Ninth Wave — which, because I’m sure my father is wondering, is the astonishing song cycle on the B side of her towering 1985 work Hounds of Love — had no effing idea what was going on or why we were losing our minds. Who the hell tries to perform The Ninth Wave on an upright in a West Village piano bar?
Anyway, just to be cheeky, he went about eighteen bars into “Jig of Life” and then segued gently into some Elton John tune that the Brits had requested. We hyperventilated quietly in the back; I ordered another ginger ale.
It rocked. Sure, I’m hopped up on ginger ale and it’s 3 in the morning, but I wouldn’ta missed that for nothing.