Sunday Night with “Zowie Bowie” at Green Valley Ranch Casino

entertainment2A couple of Sundays ago, Ron and I headed out to Green Valley Ranch Casino, in Henderson, to catch Chris Phillips and Marley Taylor, also known as “Zowie Bowie,” perform their Vintage Vegas Big Band show in the “Ovation Showroom.”  Very fun!  Several of our good friends were in attendance as well: Carmine Mandia (of “Shades of Sinatra”), Ed Mathews (Desert Productions and producer of “Hit Parade” at the Suncoast Hotel & Casino), Justin Olsen (President of “Swing Beat Entertainment”), Mark Giovi (AMAZING tenor and Lead Singer in the late-night Vegas show, “Bite” at The Stratosphere Hotel), and Ned Mills (musical director of “Shades of Sinatra” and creator of “Lionardo: Piano Follies”).  Upon arrival, Ron and I were immediately recognized and greeted by Buddy who treated us like absolute royalty, showing us to the “reserved” tables and making sure we (along with my mom and dad) were well taken care of all evening long.  It was quite something.  Talk about “old Las Vegas style”…I loved it!  Thanks Buddy…you’re the BEST!

Hangin' with Buddy, Chris (Zowie Bowie) and Mark after the show!

Ron and I hangin' with Buddy, Chris (Zowie Bowie) and Mark after the show!

As for the show, it was incredibly entertaining.  Featuring a 12-piece big band, and some of the greatest music of all time (Sinatra, Steve and Eydie, Sammy Davis Jr, Bobby Darin, etc…), Zowie Bowie’s Vintage Vegas show was a total hit with the crowd (plus, if you haven’t noticed from the photo above, Chris and Marley aren’t exactly tough to look at!  Talk about GORGEOUS…SOOOO not fair!!) :) AND not only are they talented and gorgeous, they also happen to be two of the nicest, most genuine people I know…very sweet and VERY fun!

Unfortunately, this looks like it may have been one of that last times that you (or I) will be able to catch their Big Band Show at Green Valley Ranch.  But fortunately, it’s for a very good reason.  Chris and Marley are headed to the PALMS Hotel & Casino!! Yes, that’s right!  Beginning March 6th, 2009, you’ll be able to catch “Zowie Bowie” every Friday and Saturday night in “The Lounge” at the Palms Hotel & Casino.  And although it will most likely be their Top 40 Show, rather than the Big Band show (my personal favorite), you can be assured it will be an FABULOUS evening!  CONGRATS on your move to the PALMS, Chris and Marley….you two deserve it!  We had a great time at the show, and we look forward to seeing you again soon…

To find out more about Zowie Bowie, check out their official website at www.zowiebowie.com.

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Ron and Lisa Smith: Performing at the Suncoast Hit Parade!

Ron and Lisa Smith at "Hit Parade" Show

Ron and Lisa Smith at "Hit Parade" Show

On Thursday. Ron and I were the special guests on the “Hit Parade” Show at the Suncoast Hotel & Casino.  We performed a 20-minute guest spot featuring the music of Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme.  Considering they have each had successful careers lasting more that 50 years, it was difficult to decide which of their MANY hits to include!  Oh my goodness, so much GREAT music!!!

But we finally narrowed it down, and here’s what we ended up doing:

  • SIDE BY SIDE – Ron and Lisa (2:30)
  • GO AWAY LITTLE GIRL – Ron (2:30)
  • TOO CLOSE FOR COMFORT – Lisa (2:30)
  • DARN IT BABY, THAT’S LOVE – Lisa and Ron (2:30)
  • PRETTY BLUE EYES – Ron (2:00)
  • IF HE WALKED INTO MY LIFE – Lisa (3:35)
  • THIS COULD BE THE START OF SOMETHING BIG – Ron and Lisa (2:30)

In between each song, we also included short talk spots all about the life and extensive careers of Steve & Eydie (both as a duo and as solo artists). We also had a live band to accompany us, which was awesome! It was Ned Mills (musical director for Shades of Sinatra) on keys, Jiggs Hemsley on sax & flute, and Cliff (this was the first time I met him…but he was great!) on drums.  Very fun.

I have to tell you though, I now believe that Eydie Gorme may quite possibly be one of most under-appreciated singers out there.  In preparing for this show, I came across some of the most AMAZING performances on tape of any female singer in the business.  Seriously, the woman could SING!  I don’t know how many people really give her credit for just how great she was!  In fact, there are a couple old videos on YouTube that I highly recommend you check out (and I guarantee, you will have a brand new appreciation for Eydie Gorme and her MEGA-talent)!

Check out Eydie singing “If He Walked Into My Life” by clicking here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-lpzsNRJdzw

Or Eydie Gorme singing “I Wanna Be Around” on The Tonight Show starring Johnny Carson in 1966 by clicking here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4DRYOFSuWdM

Anyway, we had such an amazing time, and the audience at the Suncoast was incredible (but then again, they ALWAYS are…the Suncoast really is one of my absolute favorite places to play!).  I’m just really bummed that we weren’t able to get the show video taped. Usually they have someone there to tape, but for some reason he wasn’t there this past Thursday. :-( Oh well…c’est la vie.  Anyway, we had a great time, and really look forward to performing our tribute to the music of Steve and Eydie again somewhere else in the future!

Another GREAT Show at the “Hit Parade” at Suncoast Casino!

With Lorena Provincio, Gary Oldes, and Karen Murphey Following the "Hit Parade Show"

With Lorena Provincio, Gary Oldes, and Karen Murphy following the "Hit Parade Show"

Wanted to take a few moments to let everyone know about the GREAT show we saw last Thursday, with our dear friend Karen Murphy, at the Suncoast Hotel & Casino! If you don’t know already, every Thursday afternoon at 2:00pm the Suncoast Hotel and Casino in Summerlin hosts a FREE show for their Coast Club Members (and by the way, it’s FREE to become a Coast Club Member) in their 500-seat showroom called “The Hit Parade.”  It’s produced by Ed Mathews, co-founder of Desert Productions, who also produces many of the popular, and always sold-out, evening shows at the Suncoast (including The Las Vegas Tenors and Shades of Sinatra).  The weekly show, which got it’s start back in 2006, features some of the best acts and musicians found in Las Vegas.  Each week the regular co-hosts (Jay Robert Joseph and Terri Lynn Pershing) and the extremely talented band (Ned Mills, musical director/keyboards/vocals; Gary Oldes, drums/vocals; Jiggs Hemsley, sax/flute) bring the audience an entirely new show and a different featured guest entertainer.

Bobby Black

Bobby Black

This past week, the guest entertainer was Bobby Black (of the Las Vegas Tenors) and the female co-host (filling in for an absent Terri Lynn) was Robin Berry-Vincent, one of the Las Vegas “Swing Sisters.”  Occasionally, they will also feature an up-and-coming artist to do a song or two, and this week the audience was fortunate to have classical singer Lorena Provincio share her beautiful voice.

If you haven’t had the opportunity to see Bobby Black perform, you are totally missing out.  He really is an incredible singer.  While I may not always agree with Bobby’s business decisions (particularly everything that happened with Mark Giovi…don’t even get me started on that one…), I have to admit that he is absolutely one of the best singers in Las Vegas right now.  He presented a full 25 minutes of non-stop entertainment, and the audience loved him.

In fact, as a whole, last Thursday’s show was quite possibly one of the best “Hit Parade” shows I’ve seen there (and we’ve seen, and actually performed in, a lot of them).  Jay and Robin worked great together (both of them are incredibly seasoned performers who know how to choose the right songs for their voices…an often underestimated talent) and the addition of Ned Mills as musical director/accompanist (together with Gary Oldes) has made a HUGE difference in the quality of the show in general.

You can pick up your FREE tickets for the weekly show at the Suncoast Box Office every Monday between noon and 8pm (although, I would suggest getting there early…the regulars start lining up by about 10:00am and tickets go QUICKLY!!). :)

To read more about talented co-host Robin Berry-Vincent, visit the “Swing Sisters” Website at www.swingsisterslasvegas.com/bios.php

To learn more about co-host Jay Robert Joseph (what a fantastic singer and performer!), visit his website at www.JayRobertJoesph.com

Visit the Las Vegas Tenors website to learn more about Bobby Black: www.LasVegasTenors.com