The line was around the block and fans had been waiting over two hours to hear three of One Life to Live's singing actresses take a different kind of center stage. Kassie dePaiva (Blair), Renee Goldsberry (ex-Evangeline), and Kathy Brier (Marcie) were headlining together, for the first time at The Derby, a great big funky club on the edge of Hollywood.
Putting on a concert the night before the Emmy's was Kathy Brier 's brainchild. “We thought, why not try it and see if the fans will come out.” Brier had no idea the line was around the block. “That’s good to know because we want them here and we want them to enjoy the show. It’s going to be so much fun.” It took about three months to pull it together. And, they orchestrated it long distance. They sent the charts out ahead of time. The first time they worked with the band was less than 24 hours before the actual concert.
DePaiva returned to her Kentucky roots and got things rolling with blue-grass. Goldsberry performed her own brand of fusion jazz. “They haven’t invented a word, yet, for Renee’s music," Brier told Soapdom, "It’s so cool. I love her sound. She writes all of her own stuff! It's always unique and fresh.” Brier rounded out the evening with her take on '80's rock. There was something for everybody and that's the way they wanted it.
While the fans patiently waited to get in, each of the women went through her paces, one last time, not sure if they would be able to pull it off. This was their show, they set the tone, and it couldn't have been more casual. All three of them were wearing jeans and flirty/girlie camisoles. They left their characters far behind in One Life's studio walls.
It didn't take long for the room to fill up. Among the early guests were Hillary B. Smith (Nora, OLTL) fresh from the SoapNet shindig and, what seemed like all of Goldsberry's family taking pictures of everyone. Smith was bombarded with fans. She was just like you would imagine her to be -- warm, friendly, and chatty! She made time for every single fan who wanted a hug or a picture or both. The moment Heather Tom (ex-Kelly, OLTL; ex Victoria, Y&R) entered the room, dePaiva let out a hoop and a holler, and hugged her like a long lost relative. It wasn't long before Goldsberry's TV sister, Tika Sumpter (Layla) joined the reunion. Total love fest!
A great big round bar cut a large swath around the entire room. Not a seat to be had. People were ready!
DePaiva jumped on the stage which was more like a small platform and stood in front of the mic. She looked down at it -- way down at it. “Kathy Brier was up here earlier. My boobs will be singing. We’ll start off with a little blue grass. Hee-haw!” Between laughter and applause, that remark set the tone for the rest of the night. de Paiva's love of country and blue-grass was foot-stoppin', hand clappin' contagious. “Obviously, we have some rednecks in the house. You’re lookin’ at one!”
There were ballads and if you looked carefully, Brier was snuggling with her adorable boyfriend.
Right in the middle of A Real Good Memory a song from her newest CD, I Want To Love You, dePaiva spotted Emmy nominee, Dan Gaulthier (ex-Kevin, OLTL) walking in with his wife. Brier rushed up and threw her arms around him. dePaiva changed the order of her songs and the beat took a decidedly up turn, “Dan Gauthier, I’m gonna sing this song to you," dePaiva yelled out. "C’mon sexy man!” But he wasn't budging. It took Goldsberry's strong arm to get the shy boy up onstage.
The audience was on dePaiva's side. They wanted some hip action. “I’m going to totally embarrass you.” She slithered up and down his hips to the whoops and yelps of an appreciative audience. Slowly Gauthier started to move and groove with dePaiva. Finally, he took her by the hand and led her in a bit of jive. The audience was screaming with delight. Truth be told, the poor guy couldn't wait to get out of the spotlight! And, dePaiva needed some libation, “I have to have a sip of my adult beverage.”
Near the end of her set, dePaiva readied the fans for the next singer, “Renee you want to come up and join me? She was my dressing roommate.” As Renee bounded up there, dePaiva asked the room, “Do you miss her?” “Yeah!” The answer was so loud, they must have heard it in New York.
Goldsberry just finished a movie with Steven Seagal, an action-adventure flick, “I shot guns. My favorite part. No man saved me. I saved everybody.” The almost all-female audience couldn't get enough of the much missed One Life Emmy nominee.
Goldsberry and dePaiva were dressing roommates and great, good friends. The separation hasn't been easy Goldsberry told the adoring fans. “I miss being with her, with everybody. I miss fighting with her on One Life to Live.” Scattered around the club, Goldsberry introduced her parents, her siblings her nieces, and her husband. They came from as far as Texas to support her through the festivities.
As she began her set, the audience grew quiet, and she confessed, "Before I moved to New York and became a Broadway person, then a soap opera actor, I was out here singing in clubs like The Derby.” If you remember, Goldsberry was one of the back-up singers on Ally McBeal.
Goldsberry wrote a song for her young niece, who was part of the Texas contingent. She stood at the foot of the stage watching her aunt wow the fans. But before she could get up there, Goldsberry announced, “I’m doing this song because my Dad’s here. She rocked the house with the funky moves and music. Caught up in the excitement, the pre-teen marched up to the platform, danced with her aunt, then attached herself to the back up singers. Good genes run in the Goldsberry family.
Sitting in a diner, after leaving One Life Goldsberry heard, Bonnie Raitt's I Will Not Be Broken. “I didn’t write that song, but I love it." It fit her melancholy mood and mixed emotions about spreading her wings and moving on.
She ended her set with a song she wrote and sang for Marcie and Michael's wedding. "There was a string quartet behind me. They walked down the aisle. Then a tornado happened and Evangeline went blind. But, this is how I always envisioned it.” A classic mix of what Brier called fusion and jazz. She couldn't have chosen a better way to close her portion of the night.
As quiet and soft as Goldsberry was, that's how raucous and wild Brier was. We got to see the real Kathy Brier, the woman who knows how to command a room and hold it. “I hope you’re all drinking. Otherwise this song isn’t going to make much sense." Any Other Way brought them to their their feet and the One Lifers must have thought they were in an '80's mosh pit. The diva pushes them even further, “Shake what your Mama gave ya!" Nathaniel Marston (Michael, OLTL) arrives just in time to miss the rave, but dePaiva doesn't care. She's so happy to see his face.
All of the songs were from Brier's CD, Heartbreaker. One song, Forgiveness, honors the camaraderie and fellowship New Yorkers felt right after 9/11. "When I was doing Batboy, The Musical, I would come up out of the subway and I saw all the pictures of missing people.” This song commemorates their lives.
A trio of powerhouse singer/actresses had the audience in the palms of their hands for almost 90 minutes. Nobody wanted the night to end. De Paiva and Goldsberry couldn't let Brier finish solo. They took their positions off the side of the stage and sang their little hearts as Brier ended the show. She thanked everyone, especially her friends, “They were such good back up, Ladies!"
While everyone took a moment to catch their breath and re-group for the long autograph lines, Soapdom bumped into Heather Tom. “It was awesome. It was so great! Those girls are so talented, I am completely awestruck by them. I could never do that. Give me a karaoke mic and you’ll have to pry it out of my dead cold hands!”
It was almost midnight before the last of the hugs and autographs were signed. But, everybody went home tapping their toes. De Paiva, Goldsberry, and Brier hope they can pull this off next year. See ya, then!
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