Singer/pianist Michael Feinstein was both a prime motivator and a beneficiary of a renewed interest in pre-rock popular music that started in the 1980s, a trend that also found Linda Ronstadt selling millions of copies of albums of traditional pop made with conductor Nelson Riddle and that fueled the success of Harry Connick Jr. In Feinstein's case, it allowed him to establish a career as a nightclub entertainer and then move up to theaters while releasing major-label albums; his background as a musical archivist also enabled him to bring a scholar's knowledge to his performances of classic pop music. He was born Michael Jay Feinstein on September 7, 1956, in Columbus, Ohio. His father, Edward Feinstein, was an executive in the meat business, but had been a band singer, while his mother, Mazie Feinstein, was an amateur tap dancer.
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