Las Vegas Backstage Talk

Comedian Bill Engvall, Pia Zadora

Dec 1, 2016

Audio is posted below except on Internet Explorer

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Comedian Bill Engvall, and Golden Globe winner Pia Zadora guest on Las Vegas Backstage Talk radio show with Comedian Michele LaFong.

Bill Engvall is appearing at Treasure Island on Dec. 2.

In a backstage videotaped interview, Bill reflects on his some-what competitive spirit on keeping up with Jeff Foxworthy’s exploding career, and how it affected his ability to enjoy himself for the first two years of The Blue Collar Comedy Tour.

You know Bill from his TBS sitcom “The Bill Engvall Show”, as host of “Country Fried Home Videos”, and one of the four on the original Blue Collar Comedy Tour along with Jeff Foxworthy, Ron White, and Larry the Cable Guy.

Bill Engvall is featured in Michele LaFong’s monthly syndicated column  “Las Vegas Backstage Talk” in Gaming Today, and in Casino Player Magazine.

LaFong interviews Engvall backstage at The T.I (Treasure Island) on video posted on site. Go to VIDEO on menu bar.

For more about Bill Engvall, click here–

Treasure Island Theatre, Friday March 6, 9:00pm

Pia Zadora

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Pia Zadora guests in-studio on Las Vegas Backstage Talk with Comedian Michele LaFong.

Golden Globe winner, GRAMMY Award® nominee, ShoWest winner, accomplished singer, film and Broadway star all describe Pia Zadora. Performing since the age of six, for those who have seen her in concert, what comes to mind first and describes this multi-talented performer is simply this: Pia Zadora is the complete entertainer. For more information, visit http://piazadora.com or follow her on Twitter @OfficialPiaZ.

Consummate performer and Las Vegas resident Pia Zadora joins forces with another notable mainstay, Piero’s Italian Cuisine, with the opening of “Pia’s Place,” a space long known as the “Monkey Bar.”  Zadora will perform in the intimate room Friday and Saturday evenings indefinitely at 9 p.m.

At “Pia’s Place,” the chanteuse reunites with legendary Sinatra pianist and musical director Vincent Falcone rounding out a quartet. Zadora will showcase her versions of standards such as “The Lady is a Tramp,” “Old Black Magic,” and “All of Me,” as well as a variety

Pia Zadora performs in “Pia’s Place” at Piero’s Italian Cuisine, 355 Convention Center Drive, on  Friday and Saturday evenings starting at 9 p.m.. A cover of $30 includes two drinks. Must be 21 and over with a valid ID.

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Comic Steven Wright

November 25, 2016, Happy Thanksgiving!

Audio is posted below except on Internet Explorer
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Academy Award®-winner and Grammy® Award nominee Steven Wright guests on Las Vegas Backstage Talk radio show with Comedian Michele LaFong. 

Steven Wright is appearing at The Orleans Showroom, Showtime each evening is 8 p.m.  For more about Steven Wright: www.stevenwright.com

After launching his comedy career at the age of 23 as a regular performer at Ding Ho’s Comedy Club and Chinese Restaurant in Cambridge, Mass., Wright got big break and was booked on “The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson.” Following his performance, Wright was invited to return to the Tonight Show the following week for a rare back-to-back appearance. His new kind of comedy and lackluster voice caught the comedy world’s attention, and he later appeared on “Saturday Night Live” and “Late Night with David Letterman.” As his fame grew, he starred in two HBO specials — “A Steven Wright Special” and “Wicker Chairs and Gravity.”

In 1985, Wright received a Grammy® nomination for his debut album, “I Have a Pony.” Twenty-two years later, he won a second Grammy® nomination for its sequel, “I Still Have a Pony.” Following his second nomination, he was the first inductee into The Boston Comedy Hall of Fame.

In 2011, Wright voiced the character Danny on an episode of the animated series, “Aqua Teen Hunger Force” and guest starred on the hit series “Louie.”

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Kevin Cronin, Ian Anderson, Ted Lange

November 17, 2016

 Audio of interviews posted below (Scroll down)

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Iconic Lead Singer of REO Speedwagon Kevin Cronin guests on Las Vegas Backstage Talk radio show with Comedian Michele LaFong.

“Keep On Loving You” rockers REO Speedwagon will bring nearly 40 years of hits to the Orleans Showroom November 19-20.

Loosely formed in 1967 playing frat parties at the University of Illinois, REO Speedwagon signed with Epic Records in 1971. The band released nine albums throughout the ‘70s, culminating with the twice-platinum “You Can Tune a Piano but You Can’t Tuna Fish” in 1978.

REO Speedwagon exploded to the top of the charts, setting the bar for other rock bands with their 1980 release “Hi Infidelity.” The colossal hit spent 15 weeks at #1 on the Billboard 200, selling more than 10 million copies. The group’s most commercially successful album, it remained on the charts for 65 weeks and spawned the #1 single “Keep On Loving You” as well as hits “Take It on the Run,” “In Your Letter” and “Don’t Let Him Go.”

The band continued releasing hit albums into the ‘80s, including 1984’s “Wheels Are Turnin’” and its #1 single “Can’t Fight This Feeling.” REO Speedwagon released “Find Your Own Way Home,” their 15th studio album, in 2007. Two years later, they teamed up with fellow Midwestern rockers Styx for the single “Can’t Stop Rockin’,” which became the title track for the groups’ hit summer tour with .38 Special.

The current lineup includes founding member Neal Doughty, iconic lead singer Kevin Cronin, longtime bass player Bruce Hall, former Ted Nugent guitarist Dave Amato and former Wang Chung drummer Bryan Hitt.

Ian Anderson (Jethro Tull)

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Legendary Prog Pioneer Ian Anderson guests on Las Vegas Backstage Talk.

A sequel to Thick as a Brick (1972), entitled Thick as a Brick 2, was released on 3 April 2012. It is billed as being performed by Jethro Tull’s Ian Anderson instead of being a Tull album proper. Anderson is currently on tour performing both albums in their entirety. A trailer for the newer TAAB album is posted on YouTube.
Anderson played the flute on the track “Cannonball” by The Darkness on their 2012 album, Hot Cakes.
Congratulations on your new album release Homo Erraticus.-a concept album blending rock, folk, and metal music.

Ted Lange

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Actor/Director Ted Lange guests on LVBST radio show with Comedian Michele LaFong.

Comedian Jeff Wayne, will be performing his one-man show, “Big Daddy’s Barbeque,” for one day only at the Starbright Theater, 2215 Thomas Ryan Blvd., Summerlin, Sunday, Sept. 21.
The Los Angeles Times says this show is “Ferociously funny.” Variety dubbed the show “a one-man riot.” NPR says, “Jeff Wayne has an attitude like Al Bundy, this guy is laughs plus!” Wayne spent many hours researching barbeques, as he began writing the show. Once it was on paper he went to his friend, Ted Lange, who is best remembered as, Isaac (the bartender) on the television series, “The Love Boat,” and asked him if he would direct the show. Lange has kept busy since the “Boat” years directing movies. He just completed filming 26 episodes of “Mr. Box Office,” starring Jon Lovitz, and will be on the “Love Boat” float in the annual Rose Bowl Parade.

The plot of the show is simple: Jeff plays a letter carrier on his day off. He has his weekly barbeque, where he invites his friends over (the audience), and as he cooks Wayne pontificates and opines. “They say you should cut down on red meat, I stopped using Ketchup.” And he tells his audience about the lady we never see but her presence permeates, his XX-wife Phyllis. “Yes we were married, divorced and then I remarried, I wanted my house back!” There is a problem at today’s barbeque, Phyllis has been given tickets to the opera, and she wants to go. Big Daddy doesn’t. Many critics have had the same response, “it’s like watching Ralph and Alice Kramden in the “Honeymooners,” as Big Daddy tries to laugh, sing and dance his way out of going to the opera.
Wayne was always a funny kid, and as soon as he was able to leave Kentucky, Jeff traveled west to learn how to make people laugh, eventually landing at the world famous Comedy Store in Hollywood. A seasoned veteran today, Wayne continues to perform his stand-up comedy at clubs, colleges, cruise lines, and on all the top television shows such as HBO, Showtime, A&E, Fox, and Comedy Central. The late Joe Delaney, of The Las Vegas Sun, tagged him as a “blue collar Lenny Bruce.”

 

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Ray Romano, Al Jardine

November 10, 2016

Audio of interviews are posted below… except on Internet Explorer

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Ray Romano, and original Beach Boy Al Jardine, guest on Las Vegas Backstage Talk radio show with Comedian Michele LaFong.

Ray will be appearing at The Mirage on Nov. 11 with David Spade.

Ray Romano, the star from one of the most respected comedy sitcoms in television history, Everybody Loves Raymond, teams up with David Spade, the wise-cracking, power-hungry assistant from Just Shoot Me, for an evening of hilarious banter as they share our stage together.

Al Jardine- The original Beach Boys

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Al Jardine, returns on Las Vegas Backstage Talk radio show with Comedian Michele LaFong

Al Jardine joined Brian Wilson on the road for Brian’s ‘No Pier Pressure’ Summer 2015 Tour.   It Started at the Mountain Winery in Saratoga, CA and hit sixteen more cities in the US and eight in the UK, Brian performed songs from his Capitol album, No Pier Pressure, as well as top hits and fan favorites spanning his 50-year career with The Beach Boys and as a solo artist.

For all the confirmed dates and venues: http://www.aljardine.com

 

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Paula Poundstone, Jay and The Americans

November 3, 2016

Audio of interviews posted below except on Internet Explorer

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Paula Poundstone, and Jay and The Americans, guest on Las Vegas Backstage Talk radio show with Comedian Michele LaFong.

Poundstone began nurturing her stand-up comedy talent in 1979 on the Boston comedy scene before moving to San Francisco. She starred in multiple HBO comedy specials and appeared on “Saturday Night Live.” Poundstone received a Cable ACE Award for a comedy special for her one-hour HBO special “Cats, Cops, and Stuff.” She received her second Cable ACE Award for her self-titled HBO talk show series.

Continuing with many successes throughout the 1990s, Poundstone starred in “The Paula Poundstone Show” on ABC and many other television appearances, including an HBO Special. Poundstone is the recipient of an Emmy Award for her field pieces on the PBS program “Life & Times.”

For more about Paula, click HERE

 

For Reservations

Jay and The Americans

 

 

 

 

 

 

With three original members – Sandy Yaguda (“Deane”), Howie Kirschenbaum (“Kane”), and Marty Kupersmith (“Sanders”) – plus the addition of Jay Reincke, Jay and the Americans have recreated the authentic sound of the ‘60s.

Jay and the Americans hits include She Cried, Come A Little Bit Closer, Wax Museum, Hushabye, Walkin’ in the Rain and This Magic Moment.

In 2002, Jay and the Americans were inducted into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame.

Jay and The Americans will be appearing at The Cannery Nov. 5.

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Tommy Davidson, Kevin Meaney

October 27, 2016

Audio posted below except on Internet Explorer

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Comedians Tommy Davidson and Kevin Meaney guest on Las Vegas Backstage Talk radio show with Comedian Michele LaFong.

Tommy’s elasticity as a performer has led him through a diverse array of roles including the lead in the Disney animated series The Proud Family and his hilarious character in Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls. Tommy has starred in four successful Showtime specials to date (On Strength of New York, Illin’ in Philly and Takin’ it to DC and Chocolate Sundaes).  Most recently, Tommy has been working on the just-renewed second season of his hit series, Black Dynamite, Adult Swim’s #1 top-rated show. Next up on the feature film front is the extraordinary story of the international celebrity Sammy Davis Jr. whose outsize talent couldn’t save him from himself in, “Deconstructing Sammy,” which Tommy bought the rights to last year and is in development on.

Known for the indelible characters he created on the iconic variety show and spot-on impersonations from iconic figures like Sammy Davis Jr. and President Obama, Tommy is truly the ultimate all-around performer. Selling out every venue in which he performs, Tommy Davidson promises an unforgettable in-studio of incisive wit, hilarious panel, memorable takeaways and big laughs.

Kevin Meaney (April 23, 1956 – October 21, 2016)

Kevin Meaney.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kevin was one of the country’s most popular standup comedians for more than 25 years. Tom Shales of the Washington Post said, “Picture the precocious love child of Jonathan Winters and Ethel Merman and you have some idea of Kevin Meaney’s act.”

His first HBO special in 1986 catapulted him to the forefront of the comedy scene. In 1987, Kevin made his debut appearance on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson and was invited by Johnny to join the guest panel. Since his first appearance, Kevin has returned to the show a dozen times. He was a special guest on Saturday Night Live and has appeared on The Late Show with David Letterman, Regis, Oprah and Late Night with Conan O’Brien.

Kevin also starred in the CBS sitcom Uncle Buck which ran for a full season. In addition, he did numerous guest appearances on both sitcoms and dramas. He also had a featured role in the movie Big.

Known for drawing upon his family relationships for much of his material, Kevin made such lines as “That’s not Right” and “We’re Big Pants People” and “We’re going to lose the house” (delivered in the tremulous voice of his mother) catch phrases for hilarity. An evening with Kevin was a trip to the funhouse and one laugh escalated into a bigger one and good-hearted humor prevailed.

Kevin was also a successful writer and producer. He wrote and produced and starred in a one-man autobiographical play titled Wedding Vows in Vegas which premiered at the prestigious U.S. Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen, Colorado before going on to
a successful summer run in Boston at the Hasty Pudding Theatre. Steve Martin called it, “The most innovative, heart-rending and funny show I’ve seen in along, long time.”

In 2002, Kevin moved home to NY from Los Angeles and began working on Broadway in the hit musical, Hairspray. Hairspray
has been a life changing experience for Kevin and during an interview on XM Radio’s Stand Up Sit Down on May 28, 2008, Kevin told the host that he was gay.
It’s been a big transition but he’s seemed to find humor in how this all happened.

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