I was not sure what to expect from Matt Dusk, the Canadian crooner. Of course I had heard jazz classics from this era, but they had never been my favorite. But last night Dusk made a believer out of me. A classically trained singer and admitted Frank Sinatra devotee, Dusk has an excellent singing voice that is perfectly suited to his repertoire of jazz and swing standards of the 1930s and 40s. He is a natural performer who delights in entertaining the audience as he croons his way through such classics as “Mack the Knife” and “I Did it My Way.” I could not help but be taken in by the engaging melodies of these songs and the effortless nature with which Dusk performed them. My favorite song of the evening was one of the original songs off of Dusk’s second album, “Back to Me,” entitled “All About Me.” This song was well-written, well sung, and epitomizes the spirit of Dusk – a charming jazz classic that proves that some good things never go out of style.
Equally as charming is the Samueli Theater at the Orange County Performing Arts Center. This incredible theater space acts as a perfect venue for cabaret and live music performances. The acoustics are phenomenal – I could hear both the Dusk’s vocals and the band equally well – and the intimate table set-up provides the perfect backdrop for a romantic evening; evidenced by the many couples who took to the side aisles to dance while Dusk performed – myself included. Needless to say, my date and I enjoyed ourselves immensely. I definitely plan on returning to the Samueli in the future to enjoy another intoxicating evening of good music and good company in a great venue.