Category Archives: Music

Keith Emerson and Greg Lake to Perform in Las Vegas?

Maybe yes, maybe no.  The duo from the classic rock group Emerson, Lake and Palmer has planned their “Unplugged Tour” for the Las Vegas Hilton for April 24.  But, hold on… to date, the group has had a very rocky start and have cancelled their prior U.S. shows due, as they say, to “musical and technical reasons.”  Keep your fingers crossed- and toes!

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It happened: American Idol contestants invaded Las Vegas!

What Las Vegas Backstage Access reported yesterday, came true:  Season 9 “American Idol” finalists were spirited quietly away on an overnight trip to Las Vegas.  

On Friday the finalists arrived and took in Cirque du Soleil’s “Viva Elvis” show and then they took over the stage on Saturday for a critique and mentoring by Adam Lambert, Season 8 “Idol” runner-up. 

Lambert flew in from Vancouver to meet the contestants, who rehearsed Elvis hits such as “Viva Las Vegas.” Lambert told them not to be afraid to jump out of character. 

Season 9 finalist Crystal Bowersox was standoffish at the Friday meetup, eating by herself at the Aria buffet as other fellow contestants ate together. 

No photos were released of the “Viva Elvis” event and security personnel went so far as to temporarily confiscate cell phones for most of their three-hour stay in the Elvis theater at Aria. 

The “Idol” contingent left about 6 p.m. on Saturday. 

Meanwhile, across town at Sam Boyd Stadium, Season 8 winner Kris Allen tweaked Lambert during Pet-a-Palooza, which drew an estimated 28,000 happy four-legged beast owners {also reported by Las Vegas Backstage Access yesterday}.

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Academy of Country Music Awards Brings Oodles of Celebs to Las Vegas

Brooks & Dunn, Lady Antebellum, Randy Houser, Miranda Lambert, Reba McEntire and Montgomery Gentry are just some of the many country music stars planning to participate in the 45th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards In Las Vegas starting on April 18. 

Honoring country music’s top talent and the industry’s hottest emerging talent, to be broadcast LIVE from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas Sunday, April 18 at 8:00 PM live ET/delayed PT on the CBS Television Network. In addition, the Academy will tape an all-star concert special, ACM Presents: Brooks & Dunn – The Last Rodeo at the same location on Monday, April 19, to air at a later date on the CBS Television Network. Both shows are produced for television by Dick Clark Productions.

The list of events includes the ACM Concerts at Fremont Street Experience, the ACM Chairman’s Ride, a special USO performance, All-Star Jam and more. 

Some details are as follows, with timing information to be released later: 

Friday & Saturday, April 16 & 17

ACM Concerts at Fremont Street Experience – For the 4th year in a row, the Academy of Country Music presents concerts at Fremont Street Experience! Featuring headlining performances by Lady Antebellum on Friday and Miranda Lambert on Saturday, these free and open-to-the-public concerts start at 6:30pm on two stages in downtown Las Vegas.  For the 2nd year in a row, winners in each of the newcomer categories Top New Solo Vocalist, Top New Vocal Group and Top New Vocal Duo will have the chance to perform at Fremont Street Experience during these concerts. 

Saturday, April 17 

ACM Chairman’s Ride – This event has grown from its inception and for the second year will be an invitation-only event for artists and industry VIPs to experience a scenic ride through the gorgeous Nevada landscape. ACM/The Home Depot Humanitarian Award honorees of 2010, Montgomery Gentry, will host the ride for the 6th time this year. The event benefits ACM Lifting Lives. Event details and timing will be made available only to invited, registered participants.

USO Concert in Partnership with ACM Lifting Lives™ – For the first time ever, ACM Lifting Lives (the Academy’s charitable arm) is partnering with the USO to bring a free, private concert to the service men and women of Nellis Air Force Base just outside of Las Vegas, NV. USO tour veterans Montgomery Gentry and Randy Houser are scheduled to perform for the crowd. The event will be open to all military ID holders and media credentialed specifically for this event. 

Sunday, April 18 

45th ANNUAL ACADEMY OF COUNTRY MUSIC AWARDS – Hosted by Reba McEntire for a record 12th time and featuring the hottest performances by today’s superstars of country, the Awards will once again take place at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. 

ACM All-Star Jam – This raucous, no-holds-barred jam features impromptu performances from the artists who participate in the Awards. Past performers have included Big & Rich, Brooks & Dunn, Kenny Chesney, Kelly Clarkson, Sara Evans, Jack Ingram, Jewel, Toby Keith, Miranda Lambert, Reba McEntire, Montgomery Gentry, James Otto, Brad Paisley, Kellie Pickler, Taylor Swift, Sugarland, Carrie Underwood, Gretchen Wilson, Dwight Yoakam and more. 

Monday, April 19

ACM Presents: Brooks & Dunn – The Last Rodeo – Kix Brooks and Ronnie Dunn of Brooks & Dunn, the best-selling duo in the history of country music, will receive the Academy’s Milestone Award in recognition of their 20-year, record-breaking career during this tribute concert special. They will be honored for holding the record for the most wins of any artist in the Academy’s history with 26 awards in total, including three Entertainer of the Year awards. They will also be honored for holding the record for most Top Vocal Duo wins, with 15 awards, eight of which are consecutive from 2000-2007. Artists already scheduled to perform at the taping include superstars Kenny Chesney, Reba McEntire, Rascal Flatts, Carrie Underwood and Keith Urban. Details on special elements of the show and more performers that will be added will be announced at a later date. Tickets are still available for this show, which benefits ACM Lifting Lives and will air at a later date on CBS Television Network from the MGM Grand Garden Arena. For information on tickets visit www.Ticketmaster.com

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Alicia Keys Rescues Unemployed

Alicia Keys is tackling the unemployment epidemic, one fan at a time.  On April 6 the neo-soul singer-songwriter-philanthropist proudly announced she is partnering with the jobs Web site www.Monster.com to launch her Web site IAAS.com (I Am a Super Woman) and have it fully operational with all the bells and whistles in July. 

Keys is specifically looking for a full-time “head blogger,” and she’s taking applications through May 1. 

So, if you’re in Las Vegas this Saturday, April 9, don’t forget to stop by Keys’ Freedom Tour at Mandalay Bay Event Center, with plenty of resumes in hand– she just may snatch yours blowing in the stiff unemployment wind as she’s singing her message-laden songs. 

Failing this, you need to wait until Keyes is in Portugal to start the European leg of her tour.

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Jay-Z, Beyonce, Champagne & Dining Mix to Revive Slumping Las Vegas

Las Vegas is definitely showing signs of perking up and bouncing back if popping champagne corks and dining on haute cuisine is any indication. 

What city needs Big Brother and trillion-dollar bailouts when you’re lucky enough just to have Jay-Z and wife, Beyonce, grace your presence?

Jay-Z and Beyonce battled preganancy rumors like true rock stars last weekend — by hitting up Las Vegas with gusto. After Jigga rocked out at the Pearl Concert Theater at the Palms alongside Young Jeezy and Trey Songz, he joined B at the hotel’s Mint High Roller gaming lounge around 4 a.m. 

Music mogul Jay-Z was also celebrity host and a big part of the crowd draw at Tao nightclub last Saturday night with Beyoncé. 

A colossal 3.9-gallon bottle of Ace of Spades champagne is now for sale at the Tao nightclub in the Venetian for $100,000, thanks to the big price boost that comes with Jay-Z’s autograph on the bottle Saturday. 

The bottle, known as a Nebuchadnezzar in the bottle family – only two in the world -holds five times the amount of bubbly that comes in a double magnum, but is only half of the king of champagne bottles, the 30-liter Melchizedek. 

Jay-Z featured the champagne in his 2006 video “Show Me What You Got” after Cristal boss Frédéric Rouzaud made some disparaging remarks about the music mogul’s fondness for Cristal. Jay-Z led a boycott of Cristal and switched his allegiance. 

The mega-club Tao, which opened in September, 2005, announced it had a monster night that didn’t include champagne imbibing last Saturday– a record 1,400 dinner covers on the restaurant side and more than 7,000 people going through the nightclub, another record. 

Then, further down the Strip at CityCenter, the Light Group nightclub Haze at Aria was the scene of an epic champagne-buying spree last Saturday night. A photo of the high roller’s receipt for $182,000-plus turned up on an Aria casino host’s Twitter site. 

According to the casino host, the big spender ordered super-sized bottles: one each of Cristal, Moet Chandon, Dom Perignon and an unidentified brand of vodka. 

He left a $30,000 tip on top of the automatic 20 percent gratuity. 

The man made the purchase after asking for an entire section of the nightclub. Told he would have to “buy big” for that to happen, he ordered the four bottles, which appear much larger than magnums.  A magnum holds two bottles, a Jeroboam four bottles and a Methuselah eight bottles.

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A-List Musicians Join Virtuoso Michael Legrand at MGM Grand in Las Vegas

Michael Legrand is a virtuoso musician with few equals.  The three-time Academy Award winner and five-time Grammy winner started his lifelong dedication to music at the ripe age of 11, where he began his study at the Paris Conservatoire. 

Legrand has composed more than 200 film and television scores for directors, including Jean-Luc Godard, Richard Brooks, Clint Eastwood and Robert Altman, and has recorded more than 100 albums with international music celebrities. 

On March 27 he will be blending his magic for his 50th Anniversary Concert Tribute at 8 p.m. in the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. 

Legrand will conduct a 66-piece orchestra and be showcasing the evening’s entertainers:  George Benson, Melissa Manchester, Jerry Lewis, Dionne Warwick, Andy Williams, Patti Page, Frank Sinatra Jr. and Steve Lawrence. 

Actors Jon Voight and Jennifer O’Neill will host the gala, which will air at a later undetermined date as a made-for-TV concert special. 

Perhaps the biggest news is the rumored surprise appearance by Sting.

Tickets range from $62.50 to $150 (plus fees); www.mgmgrand.com or www.ticketmaster.com   For more concert details:  www.MGMLegend.com

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Chillin’ with Las Vegas Dinosaurs

Tomorrow, 200-million-year-old knock-off dinosaurs will be roaring and grazing in Las Vegas.    Amazingly, they won’t be looking for tasty prey by lounging in Las Vegas nightclubs.  

Internationally renowned designers have worked with scientists to create 15 life-size dinosaurs and present them in a live stadium show, Walking with Dinosaurs.  The show follows the dinosaurs’ domination of life on earth, including showcasing the supreme terror of the ancient terrain, Tyrannosaurus Rex, fighting for survival and supremacy.  

Viewers watch the curious beasts walk and hear their roars in the show comprised of two acts, 40 minutes each, blending technology, natural history, art, and music.

 And, parents, there is no gore or actual violence, so take your kids, especially appropriate if they’re 6-to-12-year-olds.  Home schoolers can use it as a science/natural history lesson. Though there is plenty of tension – heightened by appropriate music that is often quite lovely – the dinosaurs have apparently been sedated, or at least had their fill of humans because they don’t lunge at anyone. The nightmare factor is pretty low. 

The show is at Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas, March 24 – 28. Tickets range in price from $27 to $70 each. Tickets: 739-FANS (3267) or 1-866-388-FANS (3267).

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