11:44 | 19th February 2019

Reviews: Live Shows

Sun 19 Aug, 2012
By Robert Ingham

Paul has a wonderfully rich Baritone voice, with a lovely vibrato adding nuance to beautiful ballads

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Situated in the basement of Brasserie Zedel on Sherwood Street in Piccadilly Circus is ‘The Crazy Coqs’. This is a small, intimate venue, stylishly decorated in monochromatic walls and floors, with sumptuous red curtains draped around. It certainly looks a classy mix of Cafe De Paris meets Moulin Rouge with its table service and presentation.

Paul L Martin has been performing for over 20 years but his latest musical cabaret, ’50 Shades of Gay’, sees him performing his own songs which range in subjects from the circus, his husband of five years, the Daily Mail and the Arts.

Paul has a wonderfully rich Baritone voice, with a lovely vibrato adding nuance to beautiful ballads such as ‘The Babysitter’s Here’ and ‘The Man In The Wings’, whilst also showing great humour in faster numbers about his fictional girlfriend in Canada and his dislike of various Artists.

Ably supported by his talented band, Lana Bode (piano), Phil Donnelly (bass) and Paul Merser (drums) bring depth to the songs, and at a performance time of one hour, it is a relaxing way to unwind after a long day.

Paul shows no fear on stage, performing with confidence and flair without ever going too overboard, and his anecdotes between songs are filled with warmth and comedy, with even some audience participation involved.

’50 Shades of Gay’ is only on for one more week (22nd-25th August). There are two shows a night – 19:45 and 22:00 – and at £10 a ticket it is a definite recommendation. Get them quick though as it was packed the night I went and it would be a shame to miss this chilled, funny and witty evening. Catch it before Paul goes back into “retirement”.

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