Liz Callaway and Ann Hampton Callaway deliver a beautifully crafted and perfectly executed tribute to the music of the 1960s and 1970s at Birdland.

Liz Callaway and Ann Hampton Callaway
Liz Callaway and Ann Hampton Callaway

Should we rename West 44th Street “1960s Way?’ Just on the other side of Eighth Avenue from the Broadhurst Theatre, where Baby It’s You takes us back to the land of the Shirelles, those sublime singing sisters, Liz Callaway and Ann Hampton Callway, have brought an even more satisfying exercise in time travel,
Boom!, to Birdland. Whether or not you lived through this period, this beautifully crafte and perfectly executed tribute to the pop music of the 1960s and 1970s is pure delight

The show, a somewhat shortened version of the two-act piece they debuted last summer in Town Hall, smartly touches most of the great musical bases of those decades, from the songs of the Beatles and Bob Dylan through Carole King, Dionne Warwick, Petula Clark, Stevie Wonder, The Fifth Dimension, and even Nancy Sinatra. It’s possible one of your favorite artists has been left out, but you probably won’t care.

What does count is that, working both as soloists and brilliantly in tandem, the Callaways bring their powerful voices, superb interperative skiils, and infectious energy to this music — along with heartfelt and humorous reminiscence of thier childhood. At times, you can even picture yourself in the girls’ bedrooms in Illinois or riding in the car to the Holiday Inn..

Choosing favorites among the many numbers presented is a challenge, but if I were pressed, I’d select Ann’s haunting rendition of Joni Mitchell’s “A Case of You” and her kick-ass take on the Righteous Brothers’ “You’ve Lost That Loving Feeling:; Liz’s gorgeous pairing of Jimmy Webb’s “Didn’t We” and “Macarthur Park” and her infectious medley of “I Know a Place” and “Downtown”; and their shattering duet on Carly Simon’s “That’s the Way I’ve Always It Should Be.” (Kudos also to the wonderful trio led by pianist and arranger Alex Rybeck).

And by the way, you may never think of the themes from Star Trek and Batman the same way again. But you may well be humming them — and lots of other familiar tunes — as soon as you leave Boom!

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