Macy Gray Is Worth the Wait
as The Way Is Revealed in New Jersey
A SoundPress.net Feature Article by Rich and Laura Lynch

Macy Gray is an American R&B, soul singer known for her unique raspy vocal style. Macy is also an actress and producer. Gray's debut album On How Life Is along with the single "I Try" were worldwide hits in 1999. Her latest record The Way (drop date 10/7/14) will be revealed on her fall tour, which led Ms. Gray to the bergenPAC in Englewood, New Jersey on October 5, 2014.

Macy Gray Is Worth the Wait as The Way Is Revealed in New Jersey
Macy Gray's long awaited new album The Way drops in October.

"I wanted to create a record that reflects who I've become as a woman, mother and artist," says Macy Gray in a quote about The Way "This album is very personal to me. I want my fans to understand the place where I'm at in life and feel inspired by my music because it's relatable."

Fans were getting antsy as it took Macy sometime to appear but once she did all was well. Macy's talented team took the stage first with a short intro featuring a pretty piano piece. Then Gray strolled out in a sparkling dress draped with a boa. She swayed to the band's smooth grooves as she questioned in her smoky voice "Why Didn't You Call Me." The men were wearing ties dotted with blue lights so as a whole the group had a smart look about them. After introducing her band Macy asked the crowd to call out their names and later to sing, which her fans happily did.

Heavy rhythms propelled "Bang Bang" from The Way with the men echoing Gray on the beguiling hook line. It was an up-beat tune that compelled the audience to clap along to. Macy chatted a bit crafting a tale that their bass player had woke up that Sunday morning with the idea to play in Englewood, New Jersey. When they Googled the town they had found out some good things about the community. Of course this was just a yarn as Macy has a tour planned to support The Way but it was a cute lead into the soulful "Glad You're Here". Macy pointed her mike out to the crowd who sang back and forth with Ms. Gray. Macy and her band were engaging as they often got the audience to participate in songs.

Macy Gray Is Worth the Wait as The Way Is Revealed in New Jersey
Macy Gray and her soulful, funky groovin' band in Englewood.

Ms. Gray played a medley of music from her past and present records along with creative covers including a playful version of "Brand New Key" that meandered into a jazzy jam. Mentioning the new album Macy presented "First Time" a fluid piece sung with feeling that moved into a sassy "Sexual Revolution" and "Do Ya Think I'm Sexy". The band put their own saucy spin on the Rod Stewart classic.

They finished the set with a winsome "Beauty In The World". The drummer was first to return for the encore, which gave Macy time to change into what was the third pretty dress of the evening. She rapped a bit more about coming to Englewood as they performed an expanded "I Try" mixing some reggae in for an added effect thus ending the career spanning show on a good note.

Opening for Macy Gray was Cary NoKey aka 8bit with DJ ValNtino. Cary NoKey has been described as a musical collective influenced by EDM, rave and rock. Their sound is about experimentation and experience - "a hybrid of grit and glam". The two artists contrasted each other. DJ ValNtino was wearing a hood with shades clad in all black. He handled the electronic aspects of things. 8bit was the glam lead singer sporting a flashy outfit playing a keytar and keyboards.

Macy Gray Is Worth the Wait as The Way Is Revealed in New Jersey
Acclaimed songwriter 8bit takes his show on the road with Cary NoKey.

Their presentation was a unique mix of samples, sequencing, singing and visuals. In the first track they invited us to come and join our party. A point that was punctuated by parts of Pete Townshend's "Eminence Front". This blending of well-known songs spiked with their own innovations was unique thus setting the tone for the show.

In between tracks, 8bit mentioned that he had penned tunes with Beyonce and Lady Gaga. With a little digging we realized 8bit was Rob Fusari the Grammy award winning record producer who is credited with co-writing five songs on Lady Gaga's debut album The Fame. Cary NoKey presented their own peppy version of "Paparazzi" among other danceable tunes. Cary NoKey was energetic and 8bit was rather theatrical compared to DJ ValNtino who just looked cool as he crafted the grooves. They were an interesting opening act for Macy Gray who is more of a soul singer.

The bergenPAC centrally located in downtown Englewood continues to host an eclectic range of artists such as Macy Gray & Cary NoKey. Upcoming events at the theater include Victor Manuelle, Engelbert Humperdinck, America, Bill Cosby, Completely Unchained, La Boheme and the Vienna's Boy Choir.

Macy Gray Is Worth the Wait as The Way Is Revealed in New Jersey
Peace out! Cary NoKey wraps up their opening slot at the bergenPAC.

Related Links: For more information on MACY GRAY and the other organizations mentioned please visit the following links -- Macy Gray | Cary NoKey | bergenpac.org

(Originally Published on October 06, 2014)

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