This week, Ira spoke with Willie Nelson . To listen to the interview click below.
With more than 65 studio albums, 10 live albums, 37 compilations and 40 million records sold worldwide, including the critically acclaimed classics Shotgun Willie, Red Headed Stranger and Stardust, Willie Nelson is one of country music’s most recognized artists of all time. As a Nashville artist in the ’60s, Nelson himself penned more than a few tunes that have arguably become American classics themselves, including “Crazy,” “Night Life” and the sublime “Funny How Time Slips Away.”
He has won multiple awards, including Grammys, American Music Awards and Country Music Awards. This year, the Country Music Association honored Nelson with an all-star tribute at the CMAs in Nashville. He has performed in several musical genres with great crossover success and has remained active through five decades of music, acting, and civic engagement in social causes such as Farm Aid and support of veterans.
Nelson’s latest release, 2012’s Heroes, contains classic country songs, as well as new songs by Nelson and his son Lukas. With several guest artists, including Ray Price, Merle Haggard, Snoop Dogg, Kris Kristofferson and Sheryl Crow, among others, the album peaked at number four on the Billboard Top Country Albums chart and number 18 on the Billboard 200. In addition to more than 50 years in the music industry, Nelson has co-authored several books and appeared in more than 30 films and television shows.
This week, Ira spoke with Bob Anderson . To listen to the interview click below.
Bob Anderson started a genre in show business that became one of the most popular forms of entertainment on stage today. Merv Griffin discovered Bob’s unique talent one evening at his Hollywood Hills home and decided to introduce him to the world on the next taping of his TV show from Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. Griffin introduced Bob as “The Singing Impressionist.” There were other impressionists doing movie stars and political figures, but no one was doing the great singers.
Soon after that appearance he became a regular on the TV talk show circuit, performing more than 100 national TV shows including “The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson,” where Bob received such a grand audience response on his Tuesday appearance that Johnny invited him back just two days later for another appearance on Thursday. Bob is the only entertainer to ever appear on the Tonight show twice in the same week.
The Dunes Hotel signed Bob to perform at the world famous Top of the Dunes for a two week engagement that turned into 156 weeks of sold out shows. He remained at the Dunes nightly for another 12 years. His late night show became the hangout for all the top stars on the Vegas strip, where the biggest names in show business would catch his show and join him on stage for a nightly party.
After his long career in the intimate room at the Top of the Dunes, Bob moved into the “main room” of other hotels on the Strip, sharing the marquee with the biggest names in show business: George Burns, Jerry Lewis, Bob Hope, Dom De Luise, Red Skelton, Nancy Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., Shirley Bassey, Shirley Mac Laine, Johnny Carson, Don Rickles, and many others. Bob Anderson became a Las Vegas Headliner and managed to work every major hotel on the Vegas strip as well as Lake Tahoe, Reno and Atlantic City
This week, Ira spoke with BJ Thomas . To listen to the interview click below.
Five-time Grammy® Award winning singer BJ Thomas will headline at the Suncoast Showroom November 17 and 18.
In 1966, Thomas released his first hit record, a cover of Hank Williams classic, “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry.” From 1967 to 1975, Thomas charted numerous hits, including: “The Eyes of a New York Woman,” “Hooked on a Feeling,” “It’s Only Love,” and “(Hey Won’t You Play) Another Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song.”
Thomas is perhaps best-known for “Rain Drops Keep Fallin’ On My Head,” featured in the 1969 movie “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” and winner of an Academy Award® for “Best Original Song.” Since then, the song has been featured in numerous movies, including “Forrest Gump,” “Clerks II,” “Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle” and “Spider-Man 2.”
During the ‘80s, Thomas’ music crossed over to the country charts with “Whatever Happened to Old-Fashioned Love,” “New Looks from an Old Lover” and “Two Car Garage.” He became the 60th member of the Grand Old Opry in 1981.
In 1985, Thomas recorded “As Long As We’ve Got Each Other” which was later used as the theme song for the hit ABC sitcom, “Growing Pains.”
This week, Ira spoke with The Amazing Johnathan. To listen to the interview click below.
Amazing Johnathan, who performs Tuesdays through Saturdays at 10 p.m. inside Windows at Bally’s Las Vegas, is an eccentric comic magician whose bizarre humor and unscripted antics have earned him widespread recognition as one of the most innovative and unique performers today. He started his professional career as a street performer in San Francisco, turning his boyhood hobby of magic into a full-time job. After polishing is act on Fisherman’s Wharf in the late ’70’s, Amazing Johnathan moved onto nightclubs and colleges in the ’80’s.
Despite making regular appearances on national television shows, his live shows are what Amazing Johnathan thrives on. He has literally destroyed audiences – and stages – with a style that has been described as a cross between Steve Martin and Alice Cooper. With his impulsive, raw humor and abrasive wit, he keeps audiences on the edge of their seats while exhibiting spontaneous magic and impressive special effects.
In his spare time, Amazing Johnathan enjoys collecting vintage automobiles, which now includes 27 rare sedans, sport cars, coupes and convertibles ranging from a ’32 Pierce Arrow to a range of muscle cars including a ’67 GTO and a ’72 Challenger. In 2013, he plans on completing an in-depth documentary he’s been filming about his life experiences and journey to becoming a Las Vegas comic headliner.
This week, Ira spoke with UNLV Coach Dave Rice . To listen to the interview click below.
UNLV Men’s Basketball Head Coach Dave Rice, who is starting his second season with the Running’ Rebels on November 14th, has a history with the university: he was part of the 1990 National Championship team as a player, was a Rhodes Scholar candidate while earning his bachelor’s degree in political science (UNLV ’91), earned his masters of business administration (UNLV ’93) and served as a Runnin’ Rebel assistant coach for 11 seasons (1991-92 & 1994-2004).
During his time as an assistant at UNLV, the Runnin’ Rebels made two NCAA Tournament appearances, played in the NIT five times, and tallied two regular-season conference championships and two conference tournament championships.
The first former player to become head coach of the program, Rice played for two seasons (1989-91) at UNLV as a reserve guard on two of legendary coach Jerry Tarkanian’s Final Four teams. His 11 seasons as a UNLV assistant coach is second-most in school history to only Tim Grgurich (12).
During his time as a player for the Runnin’ Rebels, the squad posted a 69-6 record, which included winning a school-record 45 consecutive games. In addition to the national title and the two Final Four appearances, those teams captured the Big West regular-season title twice along with two conference tournament crowns. Prior to transferring to UNLV, Rice played at Mt. San Antonio College from 1987-89, where he earned All-South Coast Conference honors as a sophomore and was chosen from among more than 13,000 student-athletes as the 1989 California Junior College Scholar-Athlete of the Year.