You wanna know what's new in LAS VEGAS, right?
Well, TOXIC AUDIO is pretty great, straight from New York. BELA TABAK'S SIN CITY CIRCUS and other extreme entertainment on Fremont Street are revving them up like crazy downtown (Note: Bela is my little brother and so I'm a little biased) and we all keep hearing cool things about the upcoming CRISS ANGEL spectacular going into the Luxor.
But, for my money, the best Las Vegas entertainment story isn't new at all. But the good news is An Evening At La Cage starring FRANK MARINO is still fresh as a daisy. I Won't Send Roses, but I hope to be able to fill a room full of flowers for Frank on an opening night in the near future. He deserves them.
It was twenty-two years ago today, that Norbert told the band to play.
The show needed a great emcee. To the Fontainebleau we went to see
A pretty/ funny pretty young man,
And now still after all these years,
It's FRANK MARINO, and I heart this man
(OK- that was like the worst parody to Sgt. Pepper ever. I know).
Let Me Try Again:
I Am What I Am
Some Say a Pain
Some Say a Pleasure
I Sing My Own Stuff
Some Say It's Junk
I Think It's Treasure
I have been thinking about FRANK MARINO. He is what he is- a survivor- and I so respect him for it. After twenty-plus years, he's still at the Riviera Hotel, still getting it done, still making em laugh and still making headlines.
It was late last year when I made a few calls on Frank's behalf (we go bac k a long time, Frank and I do. All the way back to his opening night at the Riv, in 1986. and now, I find myself surprised when I DON'T see his quote in the paper, his name in a headline or his face on a cover.
The newest thing in Las Vegas may well be one of the longest running stars in the history of this town: FRANK MARINO.
The reason FRANK MARINO is so successful is because he figured out, long ago, the Business part of Show Business. He has created a glamorous onstage character while building a savvy off stage life.
I heart him and respect his partner as well.
I would watch for Frank to produce and star in his own La Cage-type show, only a freshly fluffed-up multi-media production that really allows Mr. Marino to shine. The Riviera has seen better days, but I think Frank's Best of Times Are Now.
Hey? If you want to hear THE BEST rendition of I Am What I Am, you gotta check-out JOHN BARROWMAN. You may know his face from the BBC Sci-Fi TV show Torchwood, but I guarantee you'll be blown away by this guy's voice.
VINNIE FALCONE conducted a beautiful Robert Farnon arrangement of 'I Am What I Am' for Pia Zadora, and Frank and I heard them do it many times. It is a very special song, an anthem, really, and no matter who is singing it, I always think of Frank, of what he's accomplished and how he continues to grow,
As for the future of Las Vegas and FRANK MARINO? well- I'd keep an eye out for him at a major Strip resort in the near future.