Allegra Barley, hubby and me, shortly after she sang for us at our wedding, a lovely surprise my husband arranged for me that made the occasion even more special. Some of you may remember the story....for those of you who don't know why this beautiful singer songwriter holds such a special place in our hearts and why I'm asking you all to vote for her to win $25,000 in the San Diego County Fair Musicpalooza Best Solo Singer Talent Contest, here's why:
When my dad was ill, he wanted to learn how to use a computer. Chris and I bought him one and spent some fun hours teaching him how to e-mail and search the web. He wanted to send us on a cruise as thanks for doing this. We kept insisting that wasn't necessary, and Dad died before making any arrangement himself. He'd asked me to write his eulogy and, as we both had a love of music, to include a favorite song of his. I choose the song he often sang, butchering the words and making loud kissing noises throughout: Fly Me to the Moon. As I spoke of this, I asked those present to always remember my father when they heard this song.
With some money left to us by my dad, Chris and I decided to take a cruise. At first it seemed the right thing to do. However, as the departure date neared, I became unsure: would this hard-working, frugal man truly have wanted me to spend his money this way? It didn't feel right, somehow.
Our ship sailed from Manhattan. Chris and I went to one of our favorite restaurants, Ellen's Stardust Diner, for breakfast. We told our waitress we were in no hurry, going on our first cruise and kind of nervous, urged her to take her time. The wait staff at Ellen's are amazingly talented singers who perform for diners in between taking your orders (go there....you'll love it!). We'd been here many times before, but we do not know if this waitress had ever served us any other time. She took our order and said, "Well, I'll go sing a song for you."
Chris and I watched the crowd and chatted and then looked at one another as time seemed to stop as we realized that our waitress was singing a song for us. And the song that this darling young lady had chosen to sing for us was Fly Me to the Moon. Chris and I immediately burst into tears. I was sobbing by the time she finished singing. She immediately came to our table, wondering what was wrong, apologized, tried to explain that she'd selected a romantic song for us....and then somehow we managed to tell her about my father and his eulogy and all and then SHE began crying......and the manager came over....and.....well, that waitress was Allegra Barley.
Allegra sang Fly Me to the Moon for us on several following visits to Ellen's Stardust Diner, including the day we became engaged, and when Chris smuggled her into our quiet little wedding in central New York to sing it for me there, it was as if my dad was with us. Not only is her heart as big as the moon, her voice is fantastic! She writes amazing music, lyrically sound with catchy phrasing and tunes that you keep humming in your head after listening to her.
Just take a listen to her cover of "Whipping Post" if you don't believe me.....wow. She can sing. Please. Vote for Allegra Barley. Then when she makes it BIG...and it's only a matter of time...you can say you helped.