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Alicia Witt at Room 5

When Alicia Witt sings, the heavens themselves stop and listen. On a cold evening in Los Angeles Saturday night, December 12, a rare downpour that washed the city all day took a break from raining as Witt performed her tight 45 minute set at Room 5 on La Brea. A well known movie and TV actress, Witt performs as part of a trio, seated stage right at a piano while accompanied by Alisha Bauer on cello and Kaumyar Delkash on drums. Aside from one shout out to members of the crowd who are also working on her current film, there is no pretense or showiness coming from Witt. Using concise, informative patter between songs and flashing a genuine, radiant smile, Alicia lets her music do the talking instead of her celebrity. And what a voice. It comes from tender, intimate appeals, soaring to roof raising heights, as she all the while works the piano with an ease and command that, in her own words, is like her "weekly cardio workout." She promised to let the audience rock before our holiday parties, and in some tunes, the band takes off and she really lets her inner Pat Benatar out, especially in her self-described "female power song" and her "creepy cover song." But where Witt really excels is in her ballads, personal and universal poems of love, longing, and everyday girl issues. Her lyrics flow with a poetic polish, and her piano playing rivals that of rockers Billy Joel or Elton John. Do yourself the favor and catch her next time she is in LA or in her love/hate town of New York. You can download Alicia Witt's eponymous EP of songs from iTunes.

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