With a No. 1-selling album and six Grammy Award nominations this year already under his belt, Ne-Yo – the artist formerly known as Shaffer Smith when he went to Rancho High School in Las Vegas – will now kick off his first tour as a headliner in his Las Vegas hometown this Thursday, February 5, at 8 p.m. when he performs at The Pearl at the Palms Casino& Hotel.
Oddly enough, Ne-Yo wasn’t studying music when in high school- he was there for visual arts, drawing and painting. In fact, no one knew he could sing.
Coming full circle, this Sunday at the Grammy’s he will be hob-knobbing with his competition including Jay-Z and Kanye West, each of whom also has six nominations.
His Grammy nominations this year include Album of the Year and Best Contemporary R&B Album for “Year Of The Gentleman,” Best Male Pop Vocal Performance for “Closer” and Best Male R&B Vocal Performance; and, in the songwriter category, Best R&B Song for “Miss Independent,” and for “Spotlight,” recorded by Jennifer Hudson.
Carey Hart, the motocross superstar phenom and co-owner of Las Vegas-based Hart & Huntington Tattoo Company in Las Vegas, was a poster boy for PETA on February 3, appearing in the nightclub Wasted Space (a club that he also co-owns) in the Hard Rock Casino & Hotel to “expose” the cruelty of the fur trade by showing off his amply tattooed body in a poster. Hart stood next to the poster, with the tagline: “Ink, Not Mink” in a brand-new ad for PETA that espouses, “Be comfortable in your own skin, and let animals keep theirs.”
Other notables appearing in PETA’s “Ink, Not Mink” ad series will later include Dennis Rodman, Tommy Lee, and Miami Ink star Ami James.
PETA says animals that are trapped for fur suffer excruciating pain before trappers crush their chests or bludgeon them to death. On fur farms, animals are poisoned, gassed, or anally electrocuted or have their necks broken. In China, now the world’s leading fur exporter, animals-including cats and dogs-are often skinned alive.
The creative genius of Cirque du Soleil will present their fifth annual collective art exhibition at The Rever Gallery at The Arts Factory, 107 E. Charleston Blvd., beginning on February 6 and running through February 27.
More than 30 art pieces will be on display. For information, call 702-352-0225
A gala celebrity fundraiser to benefit the planned Lou Ruvo Brain Institute in Las Vegas will be held on February 28, time TBA. The event will feature cuisine of chefs Todd English and Wolfgang Puck, auction, and a long-awaited performance by Siegfried and Roy. Admission is $1,500 per person or tables can be reserved. For information, contact the Bellagio at 702-263-9797 or www.keepmemoryalive.org