It's The Norm
AT BOURBON STREET
Went to the Bourbon Street Hotel / Casino the
other evening to see and listen to a friend of mine,
singer Michael Cagle. He was being spotlighted in
a show oddly enough titled "Spotlight" which is
produced and hosted by magician and juggler Will Roya
and comedian Michael Johns.
Got to be honest with you readers out there, I had no
idea what to expect. I'm well aware of Cagle's talent.
but had no idea who the other performers would be or
what the show was all about. I sure learned quickly.
This is a darn good show!
Right off the bat, after host Johns' makes with a few
jokes, the Kold Karacters take to the stage. This
is an act that gets some of its inspiration from a
national group called "Stomp" and also our own
"Blue Man Group." First they do a robotic type
opening (much like those San Francisco Mimes you
see on the streets), then wearing masks they do a few
various dance movements (very good too) and close with
Next it was my friend's turn to entertain the
audience, which was a mixture of invited and paying
guests. He nails the audience to their seats with a
fabulous "Bridge Over Troubled Waters" followed
by a great blues number "If You Ever Have Forever in
Mind." Michael, who when not performing at Bourbon
Street, or hosting a Karaoke night at the Stardust,
or guest singing at the Bootlegger can be heard
on a new radio show, "The Spin Cycle" on KLAV
1230 on the dial every Friday at midnight. He is
also hosting a singer's showcase on Fox Television
called "Singsations." Michael returns later in
the show to sing "When You Say You Love Me" and
wraps it up with a sensational "Big Time" from
Broadway. This is a young man who has nowhere to go but
straight up the magic ladder to stardom!
Grag Steele, a very talented and good looking
escape artist (and magician) is also a very funny dude.
His escape from a straight jacket is really a classic
(considering it's an old escape), because of the music
he uses while escaping: "Let's Do the Twist" to "Honky
Then this real tall (6'6") dude dressed in a
glittering (like Liberace) jacket appears on stage.
Mark Bennick is a young Las Vegan who
combines youthful charm and personality with some great
illusions (especially his close-up hand tricks) to
mesmerize the already well entertained audience. He too
will definitely be someone to watch in the future.
|After a little over an hour
Will Roya is ready to close the show (he has
appeared now and then on a "Uni-Cycle" and doing a
"Whale Song" while annoying the host / comedian Johns).
But this time Roya is serious in that he does a very
nice "Magic Bottle" trick followed by some great
juggling. His closer is without question one of the best
Yo-Yo exhibition I've seen in a long time. He
does all the tricks possible even adding a couple I've
never seen before. His Yo-Yo, however, is not the usual
palm sized but an enlarged version visible from anywhere
in the showroom. Here again I have to use that word
"Classic" when referring to Roya and his closing
number. Overall gang, this is a great little show and
for more information call (702) 737-7200. Oh, yeah, some
of the acts are changed on a weekly basis so be sure to
THIS AND THAT QUICKLY: It's that time of the
month again when the CAST, Inc. gets together to
honor one of its members. And this month, on Monday, Oct
25th a very good and personal friend Rich Little
will be the honoree. Just a few of the people who will
be semi-roasting Rich include Bill Acosta,
Pete Barbutti, Kathleen Dunbar, Babe Pier
and Joey Villa. You can bet your shorts that
others will get on that stage and do a bit aimed at
Little. It all takes place at the Greek Isle Hotel /
Casino beginning at noon. For non-members its $27.00
and includes a nice lunch. For reservations call (702)
734-0711... Hawaii's favorite, Frank De Lima will
be appearing at the California Hotel / Casino
downtown for one night Saturday, Nov. 6th at 8 pm. His
zany humor has made him a star for over 25 years on the
Islands and here. Showtime will be 8 pm... Tony
Bennett has been named "Ambassador of Cool"
by the Golden Nugget. He inked a contract for one
year making him the official spokesperson for the hotel
in a new advertising campaign, and also including a
15-show engagement beginning Nov. 4-6... Those
Thunder Guys from the NHRA will be returning
to The Strip (the 1/4 mile drag strip) on
Thursday, Oct. 28th for the annual ACDelco Powerade
Las Vegas Nationals. The meet runs through Sunday,
Oct. 31st. Two of the big guns in NHRA competition are
Tony and Cruz Pedregon who will be
competing in the Funny Car Division. They have joined
forces with Carlos Santana to benefit and promote
Santana's wife's Deborah's Milagro Foundation
with two new and very special "Santana" paint schemes,
which will debut at The Strip. Tickets range from $16 on
Thursday to $63 (reserved) on Sunday. There is a four
day ticket for $105 or $126 (reserved). Call (702)
644-4444 for info.
TONY SACCA'S "LAS VEGAS SINGS FOR AMERICA"
Tony Sacca is a friend of this
writer. I must say that out front since I do seem to give him a
lot of space when he's doing something special. And that's the
case again. Tony's always involved with one benefit or another
during the year and come this Sunday he will pull off the
First Annual "Las Vegas Sings for America" at the
Tony appears in our homes every week
with his television show, "Entertainment Las Vegas Style"
and of course produces the annual Christmas Show at the
same hotel. This particular benefit performance is a tribute to
America for our liberties, freedom and pride of country
Tony, who also will host the show, commented. There will be
performances by singer / impressionist Bill Acosta, the
brother act and fantastic pianist Mark & Clark, lounge
legend Cook E. Jarr, comedian Sandy Hackett,
popular international singing star Patricia Welch, singer
Laurence T, Charlie Daniels impersonator Johnny Potash,
the American Super Star Dancers, Nellis Air Force Base
Color Guard and the Helen Joy's Young Entertainers.
Mike Tramontana will once again provide musical support
for all the acts with the Michael T Orchestra.
The live performance will begin at 2:00
pm. in the "Theatre of the Stars Showroom" and will be
taped for later viewing on local and national television. There
is no actual ticket sales other than a requested donation of $25
per person. All proceeds from this show go directly to benefit
the Youth Foundation for the Performing Arts, a
non-profit organization that awards grants and scholarships to
students and teachers in our community. This is truly a grand
cause and I urge you to take a break from watching that baseball
or basketball game and head for the Stratosphere Hotel on Las
Vegas Blvd., this Sunday. You not only will be helping out a
great cause, but hey, you'll see some fabulous entertainment!
Although opened to the public there is limited seating so I
suggest you call (702) 889-3587 for reservations.
Oh, yeah, nearly forgot. Tony and the
kids from Helen Joy's Entertainment have been invited to perform
at the White House in Washington, DC during the
Holiday season representing the City of Las Vegas.
Hotel & Casino over on Flamingo is busy again
metamorphosising itself once again. The other day the a press
conference and groundbreaking was held to announce that the
company will be spending another $39 million to expand its
Pavilion Convention Center from 100,000 square feet to
160,000 square feet, thereby making it the eighth largest hotel
meeting space in Las Vegas.
But that's not all that is or will be
taking place at the hotel. It just recently opened its new and
reinvented buffet. And, this is no ordinary buffet either. It is
"Absolutely Fabulous Darlinkkkk!" The Carnival World
Buffet, at a cost of some $10 million, has once again raised
the bar in fine buffet dining, offering a wide variety of fine
food and deserts, and should you like there is plush seating in
a very comfortable location within the area. Oh, yes, if you're
a Nevada resident just show you're I.D. and you'll get in
for a very special price for breakfast, lunch or dinner.
The exterior also is being worked on.
In May work began on the Porte Cochere, front desk, lobby and
Impanema bar area and is set for completion in late August.
The new entrance area will entice guest with a sleekly designed
Porte Cochere allowing for more valet parking and easier
navigation. The Impanema Bar will carry on with the Rio's motto,
"Exotic, Uninhibited and fun." The World's best flair
bartenders will perform elaborate bottle routines around a
15-foot tall Fiber Optic and oil art piece that will light up to
synchronize with music.
Renovation on the very popular All
American Bar & Grill is already underway and is scheduled to
re-open in early September. The Voodoo Café & Lounge,
which has maintained a position as a great viewing location,
will undergo major remodeling on the 50th and 51st floor outdoor
patios. There will be a new outdoor staircase connecting the two
patios, an aerial deejay platform and go-go platforms will be
suspended between the two floors. This is set to be completed by
December. Total cost for all this new stuff is around $80
THIS AND THAT QUICKLY: Casa
Mia Marks will introduce the first works of its Italian
artists to Las Vegas at a "Italexpo" inside the
Tuscany Hotel & Casino June 11-12, from 2 to 8 pm. on Friday
and 3 to 9 pm. on Saturday and it's opened to the public. From
what I've heard this is some of the most beautiful pieces of
artistry to be seen anywhere... The Riviera Hotel has
been watching the audience count continue to climb for the
show in its La Cage Showroom. Show time is 10 pm. nightly
except Thursday and tickets are priced at $39.95 plus tax and
fee... David Saxe has put his money where his heart is:
he purchased the former Ovation Theatre inside Desert
Passage at the Aladdin Hotel. He also got a lot of
the surrounding stuff including a restaurant. He immediately
brought his award-winning show
"V - the Ultimate Variety Show"
to the theatre and has re-named it The "V" Theatre. More
on this later... Closing out this Sunday at the Comedy Stop
inside the Tropicana Hotel is Billy Elmer along
with comedy funnymen John Knight and Kathleen Dunbar.
Show times are 8 pm. (non-smoking show) and 10:30 pm., with
tickets priced at $19.95 inclusive with two drink tickets...
It's been a long time since Joan Rivers performed in a
showroom in our little village, but she's coming to the
Stardust and the Wayne Newton Theatre June 23-26.
It'll be a single show each night at 8 pm. and tickets are
priced at $29.95 and $39.95 plus tax... Las Vegas Motor
Speedway is busy installing the new Steel and Foam Energy
Reduction (SAFER) barriers prior to the Sept. 25 Las
Vegas 350 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race...
C.A.S.T. BAR-B-CUE & LA FEMME EXPOSED
As you readers know I am a big supporter of the C.A.S.T.
and what they do for former entertainers who need a helping hand
now and then. Well, come this Monday (Memorial Day) the
organization is holding a huge Bar-B-Cue party for members
only at Buddy and Lezlie Greco's little ranch. It
should be terrific with Buddy in charge of entertainment.
But, what is very important is you too can attend this
gathering of Las Vegas entertainers. If you were a member and have
not paid your dues, hey come out and pay the annual dues of
$150.00 and you're at the party. If you have never been a member
but would like to become one, same deal. Become a member it's
really for a great cause.
Let me tell you just a few things they have done with the dues
and funds raised since its inception a couple years ago. First
they started delivering food parcels to a lot of former
entertainers who needed some help, and they continue to do that to
this very day. They purchased a $6,000 electric wheelchair for
Ms. Fay McKay and presented it to her at one of the monthly
get-togethers. The C.A.S.T. presented three checks for $5,000 each
to the Performing Arts Departments of the Clark County School
System, UNLV and Community College. They have
helped pay funeral expenses for a couple of former entertainers
when the families were unable to cover all the expenses. And, most
importantly, they do this most of the time without anyone knowing
about it. A good friend of mine and of most entertainers in town
for any length of time named Nelson Sardelli founded the
organization. It was and is a great group of people. What's nice
is you do not have to be an entertainer or a former whatever to
become a member. Everyone is welcomed to join. Another perk if
you're a member: every five or six weeks they have a luncheon
where they honor a certain person. The food is good, the
comradeship is terrific and as a member you get a special discount
when you attend. There's also the annual Gala. What more can be
So if you want to see some of the greats from the past and a
lot of the new breed who are taking over the stages of today, then
join me and come out for some great food and entertainment. It all
gets underway at Buddy's place at 3 pm. and will go until at least
7 pm. But knowing this crowd they'll just be getting warmed up by
that time. Oh, yeah, guess who's doing the cooking? Two
Italians of some reputation for entertaining and of course
cooking: Freddie Bell and Steve Lippia. For
information or directions call (702) 366-7760 or go to the website
|Three years ago this reporter covered
the arrival of a bevy of beautiful ladies at a private airfield
just a few blocks from that big green giant called the MGM
Grand Hotel & Casino. The ladies were from Paris, France
and were the first imported ladies to make up the cast of La
Femme, the French cultural phenomenon that has been the talk
of the town ever since.
Well, gang, Wednesday evening (May 26) the MGM pulled out all
the stops to introduce, for the first time, seven new members to
the cast of 13 dancers. This is without question a very unusual,
sexy revue of the female body. I know that nudity conjures up
obscene visions for some people. However, in this case it is a
true art form! It has class! It has unusual lighting (if I was to
describe it I would have to say it's a Kaleidoscope of
lights) that literally hides things you think you are seeing. It
is ladies dancing as you have not seen ladies dance.
The opening is neat: A line of dancers, sorta marching to the
beat of the music in what they titled "God Save Our Bareskin."
It is precision dancing ala "The Rockettes." Each lady gets
a solo spot in front of the unusual lighting throughout the 75
minutes. One of the new numbers was really beautiful and unusual.
It consisted of two ladies covered by fabulous lighting dancing
within a metal hoop titled "Attitude." Every act is unusual
and extremely exotic and the music by renowned French producer
Laurent Gueneau, and one-of-a-kind couture costumes by
accomplished fashion designer Gaspard Yurkievich just ads
to the experience.
Preferred Public Relations, headed up by Michele Tell
and husband James, handled the pre-party (and show)
invitations held inside the nightclub "Tabu." Gina Yager,
an important clog among a staff of top PR people, made sure
everything went smooth for her boss. We do not usually compliment
a PR company for doing a good job, for that's why they get the big
bucks. But this particular company goes out of its way to make
sure things are done right. They remember why they were hired: to
promote the event to everyone within reach. You are never ignored
by this PR firm.
Anyhow, gang, I would say anyone from 18 to 90 can and should
see this show. Show times are Wednesday through Monday at 8:30 and
10:30 pm with tickets priced at $59 inclusive. Drinks are extra.
For reservations or information call (800) 929-1111 or (702)
That's about it for another week. I'm outa here!
CONTINUE ON TO...:
>It's The Norm
>LVLG "Heard Around
>Las Vegas Leisure
Editorial Content Copyright(c) 2002-2004
It's The Norm - Las Vegas
Entertainment Events; Internet Presentation Format Copyright(c)
Las Vegas Leisure Guide/PCAP
ROAD CHALLENGE WINNERS
& ANNUAL MEATBALLS AWARD WINNERS
a week this has been for this particular writer. No kiddin'! First,
as many of you know, I always look forward to the third weekend in
May because that's when the Open Road Race season
begins in Ely, Nevada.
I have been participating in the two big
races promoted by Silver State Classic Challenge, Inc., and
Steve Waldman and staff, ever since they got started in the
late 1980's. Then in 1995, after the final race in September, I had
open heart surgery which stopped me from participating for a couple
of years. But in 1998 we (my navigator Jeanine Hefflin)
roared down highway 318 and captured third place. You might
say this driver was back and "lookin' good." I had color in my face
again. I have figured out that I must have competed in and finished
at least 20 races between the May and September events, which works
out to about 1900 miles of racing.
Last weekend was the ultimate for this
driver and my navigator. We entered the 135 mph class with an
allowable top speed of 165 mph. There were a total of 132 cars
signed to take the starting flag, with seven of those in my class.
Of the 15 classes, four were won by Southern Nevadan's. The
four local winners are: Norm Johnson and navigator Jeanine
Hefflin driving a 1999 Camaro Z28 with an average of
135.0267 mph; 130 mph class won by Fred Wagner driving a 1996
Porsche TT averaging 130.0007; 125 mph class won by Duane
Bily and navigator Heather Bily in a 2003 Ford Mustang
averaging 125.0021 mph, and the 110 mph class was captured by Bob
Peck and navigator Jim Mackie in a 2003 Corvette
averaging 109.9980 mph. That's right gang, you read it right. We won
our class at last!
Of the 132 cars entered the biggest class
was the 110 mph with a total of 26 entries. That's the one Peck had
to race in. With that many entrants you better be on top of your
game because the difference between first and sixth is usually less
than a second. The Unlimited class, where the top speed is
whatever you feel you and the car can handle, was won by Jerry
Mall of Temecula, Calif., driving a 1997 Dodge Viper.
He averaged 180.5456 mph over the 90 mile course between Lund
and Hiko. At one speed trap he was clocked at over 208 mph.
That's movin' it out I would say!
The Touring Division with its four
classes (95-100-105 and 110 mph) is without question the biggest. It
is usually full of new comers or those not wanting to modify the car
to meet stricter safety requirements as you climb in speed.
Touring Division with its four classes (95-100-105 and 110
mph) is without question the biggest. It is usually full of new
comers or those not wanting to modify the car to meet stricter
safety requirements as you climb in speed. The next Division is
Grand Touring with three classes (115-120 and 125 mph) and
requires more experience and safety equipment. Grand Sport
Division (mine) is a big division with five classes (130-135-140-145
and 150 mph). This is a division that requires lots of racing
experience by the driver and of course very rigid safety equipment
for the car. Super Sport Division has three classes (160-170
and 180) and the Unlimited are really full blown race cars
with full roll cages, etc. You can come out and have a grand time no
matter the experience, age (must be 18) or car. There is a very
strong technical inspection team that doesn't waiver a second on
your safety and that's good! The next race July 15-18 is fairly new
and takes place in Eureka, Nevada on highway 278. It
consists of a challenging 55 mile course that you race up and back
on for a total 110 miles. The final race in Nevada takes place again
in Ely and is September 16-19. For more information go
next event that was a total surprise was the Annual Meatball
Awards held last Tuesday evening at The Orleans Hotel &
Casino. This award show, produced by Grant Griffin with
Marvin Lashever as co-producer, and sponsored by Senior
Life is designed to honor those who helped make Las Vegas what
it is today from entertainers, politicians, hotel executives, chefs
and media. Cork Proctor was the Master of Ceremonies
and as usual did a fabulous job. A total of 24 awards were presented
to various personalities including entertainers such as Carol
Siskind (Comedian), Myram Borders (Historical
Preservation), Maynard Sloate (Producer), Tony Sacca
(Television), Cook E. Jarr, Lena Prima (Keeping the
Tradition Alive), Jerry Tiffe (Male Singer), Corrie Sachs
(Female Singer), and four Life Time Achievement Awards were
presented to Babe Pier (Comic Impressionist), Norman Kay
for the Mary Kay Trio, Joey Villa (Comic) and
Freddie Bell. During the show many wonderful people entertained
the audience with music and jokes. About midway through the show
Review Journal Columnist Norm Clarke was on stage and began
talking about some guy I knew. Me! I was the Surprise
Secret Winner for the evening as a Journalist. I'm sure
of one thing, it took me by total surprise and I had to make a short
speech, which I have no memory of. It was a great evening and of
course we all look forward to next year.
STEVE & EYDIE
He was born Sidney Leibowitz in the borough
of Brooklyn, New York, while Edith Gormezano was raised
in another borough known as the Bronx. Both are legendary
today. How these two came to meet is amazing, considering they were
separated by another borough (Queens) and the East River.
Had it not been for the pioneering efforts of a television icon we
(you, me and everyone else who enjoys the great songs of the past 100
years) perhaps would never have had the privilege of seeing and
hearing Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme entertain us these past
It was on a Friday, October 6, 1960 to be exact, when the pair
stepped out onto the stage of the Lotus Inn and performed for
the first time as "Steve & Eydie. Steve was at the time a specialist
fourth class in the Army, stationed at Fort Meyers, Va. "When not
doing K.P. duty or practicing how to become a soldier, we (Eydie)
would hang out and sing at the Lotus. Besides it had great Chinese
food and was the only large nightclub in town," Steve explained, as we
sat down to discuss their appearance at the Stardust Hotel this
"You know the Stardust should be a little worried," Steve said with
a grin, while Eydie began to laugh. "We've closed every place we ever
worked in Las Vegas." He began to name all the hotels and
showrooms that have thus far been imploded or closed. The pair will be
appearing at the Stardust Hotel in the Wayne Newton Theatre on
Thursday, April 29 through Saturday, May 1, as part of their "One
More For The Road" final tour.
The two New Yorkers began their careers as far apart as possible.
Both were raised in tenements with Steve singing in the chorus at his
father's synagogue at age seven. Eydie began singing in high school
and went to work as a teenager, lying about her age to get various
jobs. Steve at 16 won a radio contest and became a member of the
Arthur Godfrey radio show, while Eydie at 19 was on the road
singing with the Tex Beneke band. Neither was aware of the
other until they met in 1953.
Lawrence had met a fellow entertainer while performing with Godfrey
and the two became friends. "One of these days we'll work together
again," his friend said. The two stayed in touch and in July, 1953
Steve Allen called his friend and asked him to be on his new
television show called "The Tonight Show."
The original show aired in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut and
was on for one-hour-and-forty-five minutes "We went on the air and
became an instant hit," Steve explained. "Allen and the producers were
still looking for a girl singer who knew more than five songs," he
smiled, a slight twinkle in his eyes. "In September, Eydie came in,
auditioned and got the job" Both singers signed two week contracts.
Those contracts were renewed every two weeks for the next five years.
Of course Eydie kept her day job as a secretary and kept recording for
Coral Records, where her first record, "Frentasy" had became a
local hit. Steve continued to work the lounges around 55th street and
as an opening act for other entertainers.
"You could say that those five years with the gang on the Tonight
Show were the best basic training course anyone could ask for," Eydie
said. "We, both of us, learned so much about timing and especially
comedy. In those days everything was live...there wasn't any taping.
If we goofed everyone saw it."
"That's what made it so great," Steve added. "The show was fun and
comradery was absolutely the best, with guys like Dwight Hemion
(who would go on to become a famous producer of other television
shows) and drummer Bob Rosengarden to work with. They were part
of the original show."
The original show aired in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut and
was on for one-hour-and-forty-five minutes "We went on the air and
became an instant hit," Steve explained. "Allen
In 1956 Ms. Gorme made her first appearance in Las Vegas at the
original El Rancho Hotel as the opening act for the great
Joe E. Lewis. During rehearsal it was discovered that both singers
were going to sing "Chicago." She had just recently had a hit
with the song, while it was also his theme song. The two worked it
out, however, by having her sing the song as her closer. She would
slowly start to walk off stage while singing, when Lewis picked up the
beat and finished singing it as he appeared on stage. "It was a great
set up," she smiled remembering that time long ago. "It was also the
first time I had equal billing on the marque. He insisted upon it!"
In December, 1957 Steve and Eydie were married in
Las Vegas. "We spent our honeymoon with Steve Allen working in Cuba,"
Steve laughed. Both by now had flourishing careers with individual
recordings: Eydie with "Blame it on the Bossa Nova" and Steve's
"Go Away Little Girl" as an example. In 1958 they were named
the summer replacement for the Steve Allen Show. In 1960 their first
son, David was born followed by Michael two years later. David is a
very successful composer in Los Angeles. Michael passed away at the
age of 23.
Sinatra and another great singer named Buddy Clark (who died
in a plane crash on Oct. 2, 1949 at the age of 38) were Lawrence's
biggest influence, while the great Sarah Vaughan was Eydie's.
"Those three had more to do with how we sang and what songs we sang
than anyone else in the music business," Gorme said.
"In those days everyone watched out for each other," Steve added.
"If someone got sick and was unable to work, we (entertainers) would
fill in until they were able to return."
Another dream shared by most entertainers and especially those from
New York, was to perform at Carnegie Hall. In 1982 their dream
came true when they starred in a series of sold-out concerts at the
Hall, returning in 1984 to repeat their earlier success. " Another
highlight of their career occurred in 1990-91 when they did the
"Diamond Jubilee Tour" with Sinatra. Playing before SRO audiences
around the world, receiving rave reviews and accolades from every
corner of the globe the tour culminated at New York's Madison
Square Garden, with a television special later aired on CBS.
"Steve and Eydie represent all that is good about performers and the
interpretation of a song...they're the best," Sinatra said in an
interview at the time.
Jon Maas, writing in the Los Angeles Tribune on April
6, 2003 wrote: "They killed....Singing the great American songbook
from Gershwin to Porter in front of a large orchestra, is the kind of
act that the real headliners used to do in the glory days of
Steve & Eydie's consummate artistry has earned them acclaim in
every area of the entertainment industry. Their television specials
saluting the great American songwriters such as Irving Berlin,
George and Ira Gershwin and Cole Porter garnered
a total of nine Emmy's, plus many other awards. In addition,
the pair received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the
Songwriters Hall of Fame in New York. The award, presented by Merv
Griffin, honored the duo's on-going tributes to American
songwriters. They share also a Grammy Award for their album,
"We've Got Us," and Eydie won a second Grammy for her solo
recording of "If He Walked Into My Life." Steve earned the
New York Drama Critics Award and a Tony nomination for his
Broadway debut as the star of "What Makes Sammy Run." The
couple subsequently shared a Broadway stage in the musical
comedy-drama, "Golden Rainbow." Steve & Eydie won the Las
Vegas Entertainment Award as "Musical Variety Act of the Year"
four times, three of them consecutively. They also have a star on the
Hollywood Walk of Fame.
The duo have recorded over 100 albums during their lustrous career
with both of them very proud of Steve's latest album, "Steve
Lawrence Sings Sinatra." Steve explained that one Christmas a gift
box was delivered to us with these fantastic orchestrations from Mr.
Sinatra, with a note that read: "I know how much you love this music.
So take it with you wherever you go and keep this kind of music
playing. Just tell everybody where you got it." This writer has
listened to the album, which includes 14 of the orchestrations given
to them by The Man, and all I can say this is a must listen for
anyone who loved Sinatra and his music. It's definitely a work of love
by a man who also loves his music.
In June, 2003 Bill Friedwald of the New York Daily News
wrote of the pair: "Let me say this plainly: Steve Lawrence and Eydie
Gorme are among the great treasures of American showbiz and pop
They will be appearing for three nights at the Stardust Hotel with
a 27 piece orchestra conducted by Vince Falcone (who
incidentally was Mr. Sinatra's conductor for 10 years). "We have a few
set songs we always do," Steve said, explaining the show."It's not a
show set in concrete...we'll float from song to song depending on the
mood of the crowd."
"Yeah, and we don't talk to each other for hours before the show
either,"Gorme smiled at her husband of 46 years.
The "One More For The Road" tour was decided upon in 2002, while
they were on a city-to-city tour. They had done enough one-nighters to
last a lifetime. So in February 2003 the final tour began.
As Larry King wrote in his national column: "If Steve
Lawrence and Eydie Gorme don't entertain you, then no one can
BERNIE ALLEN PASSES AWAY
|One of the real nice guys in the business of entertainment has
joined his pals in the Biggest Showroom of all. Bernie Allen
was a pal. He was truly a person who could say, "He never met a person
he didn't like!" And once you met him you knew you had a friend.
I remember the first time I saw this little guy perform. It was at
the Sands Hotel in late 1966 and I had gone to see Louis
Prima & Keely Smith (who were the lounge headliners at the time).
This particular night, prior to them, a rather funny thing happened.
Some crazy guy in a German Army uniform was coming down the aisle,
screaming in what I thought was German (but later learned was
gibberish) and climbed on stage and began a tirade. I was sitting in
the rear of the lounge along with another well-known comic who was
working at the Sahara Hotel: Johnny Carson. Carson
already knew the act and was cracking up. It was my introduction to a
life-long friend, Bernie.
Our paths continued to cross over the years and every time we would
meet we would hug and he would always pat my cheek. He continued to
work as a stand-up almost to the end of the path. My only regret is
that I did not go see him when he last performed at the Riviera.
He asked me to drop by and I failed to show up. But I was there when
his peers at a luncheon staged by The C.A.S.T honored him. I was also
there when he was inducted into the Legends Hall of Fame. I
truly believe, don't know this for a fact, that as he fell down last
week he had a joke on his lips. He now joins his three great friends
who did so much for him during his lifetime: Francis Albert Sinatra,
Rocky Grazino and Blackie Hunt. Actually he'll be with
hundreds of buddies who have been waiting with a special mike just for
him. He will be greatly missed!