By Don Heckman
Hollywood, CA. A full house doesn’t completely describe the crowd that was virtually overflowing the room at Catalina Bar & Grill Saturday night. But it wasn’t surprising, given the fact that the headliner was Lynda Carter. And that was exciting news for anyone who was a television fan back in the seventies.
Why? Because Lynda Carter was Wonder Woman. Add to that, she also won the Miss World USA Pageant in 1972 and appeared in numerous television specials, as well.
Carter did not, of course, take the stage at Catalina’s wearing her Wonder Woman costume. (Although it would have pleased a substantial number of fans – especially males – if she had.) But the truth is that many in the full house crowd seemed pleased to see and hear Lynda Carter the singer, rather than Lynda Carter, Wonder Woman.
And with good reason. Although she continues to draw value out of her past Wonder Woman identity, Carter has become a world class performer who moves with impressive musicality through genres reaching from pop and r&b to country music.
Backed by a stellar band and an equally skilled group of back up singers, she was also a convincing entertainer. Gracing the stage with her lithe movements, communicating warmly with her listeners between numbers, she convincingly affirmed performing skills that reached well beyond her role as a superhero.
Carter’s program underscored the range of her many abilities. Among the richly varied tunes she included The Black Peas’s “Lonely Boy,” a new Sam Cooke song, Bruce Springsteen’s “I’m on Fire” and Christina Aguilera’s “Candy Man.”
Add to that such familiar items as “I Heard It Through The Grapevine,” “Fever,” and “God Bless The Child,” capping her show with “Let the Good Times Roll.”
Carter and her fine musicians and singers handled the varied styles with an ease that generated enthusiastic audience responses all the way to the final encore.
No, it wasn’t Wonder Woman. But when Lynda Carter stepped to the microphone, it was all music, and memorable music at that.