By Chris M. Junior
To say that Lulu is nervous about her first New York concert would be an understatement.
“Part of me is excited, and part of is thinking, ‘Oh, I wish nobody really knew,’ ” she says with a laugh. “You want an audience, but you don’t want a fuss to be made.”
On Feb. 16, Lulu is scheduled to perform at the B.B. King Blues Club & Grill in Manhattan. She’ll be backed by guitarist Jimmy Vivino, bassist Will Lee and drummer Rich Pagano, all members of The Fab Faux, the renowned Beatles tribute band. Rounding out the lineup on keyboards is Paul Shaffer, best known for his work on the “Late Show With David Letterman.”
“I’ve been talking about this now for several years, so you could say it’s taken a while for it to come together,” she says. “But then all of a sudden, it’s happened! Which is life, isn’t it? If you’re fortunate. So I’ve been leading up to this for a long time. [But] in fact, it seems to have happened overnight.”
Seemingly overnight, Lulu became a star in America when “To Sir With Love” hit No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1967. The song, from the Sidney Poitier film of the same name, spent a total of five weeks in the top spot. Lulu reached the U.S. pop Top 40 again with “Best of Both Worlds,” (No. 32, 1968), “Oh Me Oh My” (No. 22, 1970) and “I Could Never Miss You (More Than I Do)” (No. 18, 1981).
As for what she’ll be playing at her New York show, Lulu says, “There’s a lot of stuff I’ve never done before that I’m going to do.”