This weekend I went to New York City with my sister, my niece, my great niece, and my nephew’s wife to see the New York Spectacular show at Radio City Music Hall (side note: what a great show and becoming a Rockette is now on my bucket list). My sister had an extra ticket and offered to buy lunch; I never turn down a free show or a free meal. I went but it wasn’t completely free. With my directional disabilities I had to get us around the city, make sure everybody got on the right trains, and be sure nobody got run over when jaywalking. How everyone survived, I don’t know.
One stop on the itinerary was lunch at Ellen’s Stardust Diner on Broadway. The deal with Ellen’s Stardust is there is always a wait and it’s a bit pricey but that’s pretty much every restaurant in New York. However, Ellen’s shtick is that the waiters and waitresses sing, it’s not only a meal but a show as well. I’m not really a Show-tune Fag so I don’t know most of the songs they’re singing but occasionally they slip a pop song into the mix. To be honest, most of the time I’m only half listening because I’m too busy trying to figure out what I’m going to eat. I have priorities! However this weekend one of the waitresses really caught my ear.
Her name is Nikki Pope and her exotic British voice tinged with New York grit stood out. After her performance the emcee announced that Nikki has a song on UK radio right now and just released an EP. Nikki had some copies on her so I bought one and asked her to sign it so I could say “I met her when.” Although I didn’t know what would be on the EP, I thought her voice was worthy of a further listen. Plus lately I’ve been lucking out at finding talented divas in the strangest of places.
Unfortunately the EP is only three songs long but fortunately they’re more pop than the musical fare I heard at Ellen’s. The first song “London/New York” sounds a lot like Amy Winehouse but thankfully less boozy and not as bluesy. “Fire & Ice” reminds me a lot of the Alexander Jean sound ala BC Jean’s rocking vocals. Finally on “Blue Lagoon” Nikki does a unique mix of balladry and rock with a style that is all her own. She did videos for each of the songs and she posted them on her website (www.nikkipope.com) so you can discover for yourself just how good she is.
I hope that Electric Energy is just a taste of what’s to come in Nikki’s musical career. Next my fingers are crossed for a full length album and maybe some live shows in New York. Nikki’s sound isn’t like the music you hear on U.S.A radio today…it’s better and less homogeneious. Nikki along with other New York indie diva’s like Shayna Leigh (I did an earlier post about her) are really impressing the hell out of me lately and hopefully leading pop music into a whole new direction.