Tag Archives: singers

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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Las Vegas Entertainers Come to Aid of Singer/Musical Conductor Bill Fayne

Members of the Las Vegas entertainment community are once again stepping up again to help one of their own. An all-star lineup will be donating their time this Saturday for a fundraiser at the Suncoast for singer/musical conductor Bill Fayne, who is recovering from major throat surgery for cancer. 

“The great news now is that he is on a course to full recovery,” said entertainer Clint Holmes, co-host of the afternoon show with his wife, Kelly Clinton-Holmes. Fayne has been Holmes’ longtime conductor and arranger. 

Fayne, who has lost 50 pounds from his  surgery and diabetes complications, and Clint Holmes have been friends since their college days. 

Taking the stage will be Terry Fator, Frankie Scinta, Lance Burton, Louie Anderson, Robin Leach, Sandy Hackett & the Rat Pack Show, the ladies from “Menopause,” Elvis Presley tribute artist Paul Casey, Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons tribute artists “Oh What a Night” and Human Nature. 

The lineup of entertainers include Domenick Allen, Leigh Zimmerman, Cayleigh Capaldi, Rick Faugno, Lena Prima, 5th Avenue, Voci Vegas, the Las Vegas Tenors, Tony Sacca, Jerry Lopez, Jeff Neiman and Vincent Falcone. 

The event begins at 2 p.m. this Sat., March 6 at the Suncoast. Tickets are $45, $35 and $25 and are available at the Suncoast box office and other Boyd Gaming properties.

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Barry Manilow Spreads Lotsa Love in New Las Vegas Digs

Barry Manilow believes that a good love song never goes out of style.  He believes it so much that he has now released an album dedicated to the idea.  “The Greatest Love Songs of All Time”, released January 2010, contains 15 classic love songs including “Fools Rush In” and “How Deep Is the Ocean.”  And the 63-year-old singer will be bringing these songs and more to his two-year run at the Paris Las Vegas hotel-casino starting Friday, March 5. 

“I’m actually going to focus on the fact that we are in the most romantic world called Paris,” a gushing Manilow said. “Since I sing such romantic songs, I thought that would be a really good place to do something like this.” 

Manilow hopes his new Las Vegas show will receive the same response as his prior Hilton show.  The Las Vegas Hilton performances were primarily collections of his greatest hits. However, fans need not worry, he plans to incorporate those long-time favorites into his new Paris show as well. 

Tickets start at $95 and can be purchased at parislasvegas.com; 800-745-3000.

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Wynn Resorts in Las Vegas Planning Series of Beyonce Concerts?

It is rumored in media circles that Steve Wynn is presently exploring the possibilities of arranging a string of concerts by popular American Rhythm and Blues (R&B) singer and song writer Beyonce Knowles.  It is further speculated from sources that the agreement amount with Beyonce will be in the tune of $750,000. The number of concerts and durations are not yet decided. 

Wynn Resorts spokesperson Jennifer Dunne reportedly said that the deal is yet to be finalized and contract has not been signed. The association between Beyonce and Wynn Casino started few months back when this year during July 30 and Aug. 2 the singer visited the casino for recording a DVD for her concert. It is said that during her shoots both Wynn and its sister resort Encore saw a huge fan following and increase in number of guests. Soon after this the singer has been spotted too often in the casino.

It is said that Beyonce will be following the footsteps of famous Canadian singer Céline Dion who signed a contract with Caesars Palace casino of Las Vegas few years back. In this she performed in 717 concerts within 5 years and earned a reported $400 million. 

The casino also experienced a huge surge in its popularity and earning during the concerts. It has been observed that fans from faraway places come to watch their favorite singers perform in Las Vegas casinos.

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Ne-Yo to Perform in Las Vegas on Jan. 1.

Grammy-award winner Ne-Yo is set to perform at The Pearl Concert Theater in the Palms Casino Resort on Jan. 1. 

In 2006, Ne-Yo hit the R&B scene with a style all his own – a mix of classic sounds with a modern twist. His debut album, In My Own Words, hit #1 on the Billboard 200 and solidified his role as an artist to watch. The Las Vegas singer’s sophomore album, Because of You (2007), also peaked at #1 on the Billboard 200 and brought Ne-Yo much acclaim when he won Best Contemporary R&B Album at the 2007 Grammy Awards. 

With Ne-Yo’s third DVD, The Year of the Gentleman, the Las Vegas native and premier songwriter has constructed a suite of songs that shows exactly what he means by class. Written over the course of travels through Europe and his own fascination with the hometown boys known as the Rat Pack, Ne-Yo explains, “For me, the sharpness of Sammy and Sinatra is the kind of style I strive for in clothes and music. Year of the Gentleman is named in honor of those guys.” 

This event is produced by Andrew Hewitt and Live Nation. The Pearl Box Office in the Palms Casino Resort is open from noon – 7 p.m. daily. Doors will open at 8:00 p.m. and show time is 9:00 p.m.  For more information, please call 702-942-6888.

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Wayne Newton Saying “Danke Schoen” to Las Vegas?

Wayne Newton is telling his fans “Danke Schoen” after 50 years in Las Vegas and hinting that his latest run in Las Vegas could be his last. But the singer synonymous with Sin City says he’s leaving himself an opening in case he wants to perform after April. WayneNewton2

The man known throughout the world as “Mr. Las Vegas” says retirement is possible, but that decision won’t hinge on the success of his new show that opened at the Tropicana Las Vegas hotel-casino on the Las Vegas Strip. 

Instead, he says, it depends on whether his itch to keep working conflicts with his desire to spend more time with his 7-year-old daughter. 

“I’m enjoying my second daughter in a way that I didn’t get a chance to do the first time around,” Newton, 67, told The Associated Press.  The decision that I make, whether or not to perform or retire, will pretty much be based on that.” 

Newton’s current Tropicana show, “Once Before I Go” took 2½ months to write and is presented as a live memoir of Newton’s life and his career, with never-before-shared insights from Newton about personal episodes along the way. 

“It’s challenging to keep it entertaining,” Newton said. “And that was my first prerequisite.” 

Newton has told his audience that it was tough for him to pick highlight songs from a career that includes 165 records. 

“It would be impossible for me to pick songs from all of them even if I remembered them, which I don’t,” Newton quipped. 

Newton arrived in Las Vegas in 1959, when a two-week tryout at the Fremont Hotel & Casino turned into lounge act of six shows per night, six nights a week for nearly a year. The crooner earned national fame after a 1962 television appearance on “The Jackie Gleason Show,” which led to many more singing and acting gigs on TV and in film. 

He also headlined at several casinos throughout Sin City, including the New Frontier, which hosted entertainers including Elvis Presley, Ronald Reagan and Siegfried & Roy over its 65 years. The casino was imploded in 2007. 

“I’ve been working since I was four,” Newton said. “There really has not been a time in my life that I don’t remember working.” 

 “If I still feel like I have something to give when this particular show is over, then I’ll make the decision to probably curtail work a little bit but not give it up totally,” he told the Associated Press. “If I don’t feel that way at the end of this, then I’ll probably hang it up.”

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83-Year-Old Singer Tony Bennett is Back in Las Vegas- and Rolling in the Dough!

Tony Bennett’s next Las performance will reportedly be sometime in January at the Las Vegas Hilton.  The ageless crooner has also just signed a new “unbelievable” $10 million contract with Sony-Columbia. TonyBennett

Apparently, the contract is to reissue songs and albums from Tony’s illustrious past. And if Tony, 83, cuts new albums, Sony will spend $1 million in marketing for each one, according to Bennett. 

“I’ve been there for 60 years. I’ve been there longer than any other artist and they have a full catalog of all my albums from 1950 to now,” Tony says.  

“They said they’d like me to do 12 more albums,” he says. “With each album, they’ll promote it with $1 million. But if I don’t want to do it, they’ll still give me the $10 million. I don’t have to produce anything to fulfill the contract. It’s really the best contract ever written.”

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Mariah Carey to Make History Tonight in Las Vegas

Grammy Award-winning singer and actress Mariah Carey will be making history Saturday, October 10, 2009 despite that her album “Memoirs Of An imperfect Angel” didn’t make #1 on the Billboard Charts. Mariah Carey will be the first concert to simulcast to internet enabled mobile phones and other electronic digital devices for her performance “Mariah Carey Live In Las Vegas.” 

The concert will be presented by GDE Partners at www.iviago.com in association with Mariah Carey’s label home, Island Def Jam Group. 

To catch the concert, virtual tickets will have to be purchased at $9.99 and can be obtained by texting the message Mariah to 313131 or by visiting Mariah Carey’s official site, Facebook or Myspace by clicking the link “Mariah Carey Live In Las Vegas” or by visiting iviago.com

Once you purchase your ticket for the “Mariah Carey Live In Las Vegas” you’ll be able to stream the concert on October 10th and view it at that time or save it later for a one-time viewing. The concert will have the ability to be paused and also continued at a later time, but the down-side is that it cannot be rewound or replayed once the ticket buyer has viewed it. 

In addition, on October 20, downloadable video clips of Mariah Carey’s Las Vegas concert which was recorded September 11 and September 12 from her exclusive concerts at Palms Resort in Las Vegas will be made available through select mobile phone carriers around the globe. The video clips will also include Mariah’s two concerts from October 9 and 10 and will be sixty minutes long.

On October 24th, the digital broadcast will be available in HD (high definition) and will be made available via Iviago’s virtual global stage which will broadcast to over 200 countries in partnership with over 200 partners (mobile and digital) which includes iClips and iTunes. 

If you’re interested in catching a preview, a 60-sec preview is available at www.iviago.com for those interested in knowing more about the “Mariah Carey Live In Las Vegas” or those looking to purchase virtual tickets.

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Celine Dion Paints Baby’s Room

Celine Dion is expecting her second child in May, her Montreal publicist recently confirmed. CelineDion

The former Caesars Palace headliner conceived after fertility treatments, as she did with son Rene Charles, born Jan. 25, 2001. 

Dion, 41, ended her world tour in February and later acknowledged during an appearance on “Oprah” that she was hoping to have another child. 

The Canadian singing star has hinted that she intends to return to Las Vegas to perform after a baby break.

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Cher Returning to Big Screen

Caesars Palace headliner Cher is returning to the big screen, after a 10-year absence.  She will sing while playing Christina Aguilera’s mother in “Burlesque,” which starts filming in November.

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Las Vegas Tribute Artist Trina Johnson-Finn Released in Suriname

A judge in Suriname on Friday released Las Vegas entertainer Trina Johnson-Finn who was accused of posing as singer Toni Braxton at a concert there where she was pelted with trash and booed offstage. 

The 20-year professional singer who has augmented her career by impersonating stars as a “tribute artist” is now planning her return to Las Vegas to be with her husband, Raymond Finn, emotionally drained and financially devastated after the ordeal. 

Finn, who had spent three months in jail there, said she would not be present at her formality sentencing hearing on Tuesday. 

Finn has repeatedly said she was not involved in the impersonation scheme cover up that charged up to $53 per ticket for the Feb. 28 concert in Suriname’s capital.  A crowd of 3,000 threw bottles and beer cans at Finn in what has been dubbed the “Phony Toni” concert. 

The promoters Angel Ventura and his girlfriend Signet Sampson, though, remain in custody there and are expected to stand trial in July. 

Please see  April 25 and May 7 Las Vegas Backstage Access articles covering this case.

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Jermanine Dupri Bringing The Rat Pack Back to Las Vegas?

Music producer Jermaine Dupri is reportedly on a quest to bring The Rat Pack era to Las Vegas. JermaineDupri 

Dupri, Janet Jackson’s longtime main squeeze, wants to see Las Vegas return to the time when the coolest dudes in town wore tuxes and suits. 

He has recruited Usher and Nelly into a group Dupri has dubbed “Ocean’s 7,” after the Rat Pack movie, “Ocean’s Eleven.” 

“I want to see Vegas go back to what it was,” says Dupri. 

Dupri, usually seen in public dressed in a white tuxedo with a black tie, and his crew has been the recent talk of the Las Vegas club scene, with their impromptu singing performances mirroring the Rat Pack. 

Others in his elite group include music producer Bryan-Michael Cox, singer/songwriter Trey Songz and four-time Grammy winner Johnta Austin (the Sinatra of the group according to Dupri), and Tyrone Davis, Dupri’s personal assistant. 

The idea came to Dupri earlier this year when he was producing Usher’s new album at the Palms recording studios in Las Vegas.  That mix tape of the group has just come out at www.global14.com 

Dupri has reportedly big plans for “Ocean’s 7” including an album, a movie and “the ultimate show in Vegas.”

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Danny Gans’ Autobiography & Music Video Release

Danny Gans, 52, a leading Las Vegas headliner since 1966, both at The Mirage for 8 ½ years and most recently performing at Steve Wynn’s Encore hotel, died unexpectedly early last Friday in his Las Vegas home.   (May 2 Las Vegas Backstage Access article.) 

Now it has been learned that two days before his death he completed his autobiography that was in the works for about a year.  The manuscript, according to this his manager, Chip Lightman, is now being edited and a meeting with the publisher today. 

Gans also had a music video in the works with Hollywood director Brett Ratner, performing “What a Wonderful World” in 10 voices.  It is planned to be a part of a CD that’s being released in a month by Hi-Fi Records.

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Beyonce Heads for Las Vegas Glitter

Since Las Vegas first grew out of the desert dust, powerful female entertainers have always found a home in the main beyonceshowrooms of Las Vegas casinos and hotels.   In just the past year, Las Vegas marquis have invited tourists to spend an evening with Celine Dion, Cher, Bette Midler,Taylor Swift, Rita Rudner, and coming this July, appearing at the Encore Theatre, in Steve Wynn’s latest and greatest Wynn Las Vegas hotel – Beyonce.   

Beyonce Knowles began her “I am…Sasha Fierce” tour in Edmonton Canada in March 2009.  After several dates in Canada, the tour moved on to Europe in April with stops in Austria, France, Germany and Spain along the way and ending with a series of performances in England. 

On June 21 Knowles’ Sasha tour makes its way stateside to Madison Square Garden in New York and continues across the country until July 30 when her tour arrives for four nights in Las Vegas.  

The title of Beyonce’s current album is a play on the persona she created over the past few years.  One half of the tracks of “I am…” are personal stories and come from the singer’s soul.  The other half of the album, “….Sasha Fierce” is full of the spark and flame that has come from the stage persona of Sasha.  And Beyonce will be bringing her all-female band and this high octane combination to Las Vegas for their joint Encore Theater marquis moment in July. 

Mike Ross of the Edmonton Sun recently gave Beyonce’s performance at Rexall Place 4.5 out of 5 stars rating stating, “Beyonce can sing traditional R&B if she wants. She proved it late last night – wailing on the Etta James classic At Last, which she performed for the inauguration of U.S. President Barack Obama.”

Tickets will go on sale through Ticketmaster on Saturday, April 25.  And – the good news – Beyonce is making first 2,000 seats available for $20 (plus applicable service charges).

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Jessica Simpson: Blond if you do, blond if you don’t

Jessica Simpson, a frequent Las Vegas visitor, is one of those talented types who can’t seem to catch a break.  As a pop singer she was constantly compared to Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera – too voluptuous to be nice and not jessicasimpsongritty enough to be naughty.   

Her personal life has been the used as the source to create tabloid top sellers with pictures and stories of men who have, and who haven’t, spent time with her.  

And now only months after settling into her single woman skin and stepping up to the country music mic, Simpson appears to be ending her foray into her musical roots.  While she remains part of the Sony Music Group on the Epic label, Simpson is no longer involved with Sony Music Nashville.  Lauren Auslander a former spokesperson for Simpson said, “She (Simpson) was on loan to Sony Nashville for her country album.”   

Many fans believe that Simpson is a favorite target of the media and is often portrayed in a less than favorable light because of petty jealousy.  In a recent interview, Rascal Flatts’ lead singer Gary Levox said Simpson “..is in a spot where whatever she does, they pick her apart. They need to just leave her alone and just let her sing.” 

“She’s a wonderfully gifted singer,” added bassist Jay DeMarcus. “All the other stuff overshadows what she’s really about and it’s unfortunate, because there’s more to her there than just tabloid fodder.” 

It could be Jessica Simpson will spend her time in the spotlight being the blonde everyone loves to hate.  But with her talent, it’s more likely, Las Vegas Backstage Access believes, that she’ll find a way to rebound like blonde archetype Madonna than fall into the archives like Taylor Dayne.

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Ne-Yo has come a long way . . .

While studying at the Las Vegas Academy of International Studies as a performing and visual arts major, Shaffer Smith neyolearned that it’s okay to be different.  Today, 29-year-old Ne-Yo – Shaffer was renamed after Matrix movie character Neo – doesn’t need to be concerned at all about being different.  He appears to be quite comfortable in his role as a three-time Grammy-award winning singer/songwriter, actor and record producer. 

Ne-Yo has accepted his fourth acting gig, being part of the cast of George Lucas “Red Tails” – a film about the World War II Tuskegee pilots.  Yes,  it’s that George Lucas and it’s those Tuskegee pilots.  

This will also be the feature film directorial debut for Anthony Hemingway.  In addition to Ne-Yo, the ensemble cast includes Terrance Howard, Cuba Gooding Jr., Bryan Cranston, Nate Parker and Method Man.

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Elton John Belts Out Last Beat on April 22 in Las Vegas …241 Performances & 3 Years Later

Sir Elton John started out as a limited run scheduled for just 75 shows over 3 years.  But as the lights went down on elton-johnthe first Elton John Red Piano performance at Caesars Palace on February 14, 2004, it became clear that this wasn’t going to be just a normal Vegas revue gig.  And it wasn’t the David LaChappelle photography, the inflatable banana’s and cherries or the actual red piano center piece that made his Las Vegas performances stand out.  It was the music, performed by Sir Elton John and his band that routinely drew his fans to his sold out show. 

Now, 241 performances later, Sir Elton John will say good-bye to the Coliseum at Caesars Palace on April 22, 2009. 

Sir Elton John’s career began in 1961 as a member of the band Bluesology.  In 1967 he started working with Bernie Taupin and a legendary music industry relationship was born.  After his 1970 self-titled debut album there followed a long string of critical and financial successes.  From 70’s hits like the perpetually popular “Your Song” to “Good-bye Yellow Brick Road” to 80’s favorites “Empty Garden” and “I’m Still Standing,” Sir Elton John and his who’s who cache of co-writers and producers have entertained audiences around the world.  

In 1992 Sir Elton John established the Elton John Aids Foundation to help find a cure for HIV.  To date, this organization has raised more than $150 million and actively works in 55 countries offering support services and treatment options to those living with HIV/AIDS. 

Also in the 1990’s Sir Elton John began another somewhat magical musical relationship when he collaborated with Tim Rice on Disney’s ‘Lion King’ soundtrack.  He earned a Grammy and his first Oscar for “Can You Feel the Love Tonight” and went on to work with Rice on the Broadway hit ‘Aida.’

While performing at Caesars these last five years in Las Vegas, Sir Elton John has shared the Coliseum Theater with Celine Dion, Cher and Bette Midler.  In late 2008 he took the Red Piano on the road, touring Europe with the show before returning to Las Vegas for the final Caesar’s performances.

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Las Vegas’ Newest Headliner: Terry Fator at The Mirage

Terry Fator, 43, has come a long way.   The “America’s Got Talent” impressionist, singer, comedian, and ventriloquist went on from winning that competition in 2007 to land a five-year, $100 million deal The Mirage in Las Vegas, with an option for an additional five years.  terryfator1

“When I won Talent, my wife and I were broke,” says Fator, who has a new autobiography, “Who’s the Dummy Now.”  “Now I have to convince her that she doesn’t have to buy shoes at discount stores.”

Fator is the newest headliner at The Mirage.  His performances start today, Saturday, February 14, at the helm of the 1,265-seat Terry Fator Theatre (formerly the Danny Gans Theatre) for five shows a week.

Fator’s show is family-friendly and features a cast of seven puppets, including Cowboy Walter, Emma Taylor and Winston the Impersonating Turtle. Combining ventriloquism and impersonation, Fator performs the singing styles of an eclectic group of stars including Elvis, Maroon Five, James Blunt, Tony Bennett, Garth Brooks, Etta James, Marvin Gaye, Nat King Cole and his daughter Natalie.

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