A Show With Goulet?? No Way!!
Yes way. Unplanned. Unrehearsed. Unexpected. This encounter went down at the Beverly Wilshire Main Bar, which, before being re-done and re-purposed, was one of the last authentic traditional upscale bars in LA, and one that looked like it could easily have been in New York. Rich wooden walls with intricate inlaid wood designs and art scenes, cigars and tuxes everywhere, including the required one on the pianist, every hour of every show. I remember years before I ever star
Full Or Empty: Life Is A Room That You Own
When the room is full, play like it’s a private concert for your favorite person. When the room is empty, play as though the world is hanging on your every note. Sounds completely bonkers, but it works some powerful magic, both for piano entertaining and….life itself! You’ll be amazed at what happens. The reason this works is because I believe that everybody who is listening to you is listening as though you are playing just for them (even if you’re not!). If the room is pac
Lionel Ritchie's Reverse Purse-Grab
The operative word here is “reverse”. And only in Beverly Hills could this happen. A car purse-snatching usually involves a smash and grab off of the passenger seat when the driver is stopped at a traffic intersection. The thief is in and out in seconds. Well, the reverse actually happened to Lionel Richie one night at the Polo Lounge right after he left the Beverly Hills Hotel. It was recounted to me by Doug Brotherhood, one of the veteran waiters and a longtime friend at t
The Last Pre-Covid Supergig
It was the last supergig before the pandemic of 2020 came and held us all hostage. This was a Christmas party in December 2019. The following is written as though things are still the same today as they were at the end of last year, in order to honor the memories, which cannot, and will not ever become infected. Let them serve to uplift us and create hope for all. As explained in my other posts, a “supergig“ in LA is an A-list, high-level event. To qualify, it must be over
Hangin' With Frank!
I admit that throughout my teens and early 20s I wasn’t really up on all things Frank Sinatra. I was filled with my 70s rock and pop, EWF, Led Zeppelin, Elton, Boston, Three Dog Night, James Taylor, so many others, all those FM gods to keep me well-occupied. It wasn’t till a bit later, fully entrenched in my piano entertaining, that I began to hip to the sheer mastery, genius of the singing and entertaining that was Mr. Frank Sinatra. This was despite the fact that he had be
Gene Simmons The Gentleman
As I was getting a tall glass of water in the Polo Lounge, to begin the night, Doug the waiter passed by and said “You might want to know, Gene Simmons is in tonight and he’s sitting right next to your bench”. Hilarious, I thought. I looked up, scanned the row of A-list tables near the piano, and sure enough it was true. You can’t help but be delighted that one of your “captives” for a while is going to be someone like Gene Simmons. Let alone, literally at arm's length. Ima
Chevy Chase Is a Marvelous King
He's not just a consummate comedic actor. He’s also an eloquent pianist, musician, and was actually the original drummer in the band Steely Dan. And that’s just part of what Chevy Chase revealed upon our meeting during his wonderful couple of evenings spent in the Polo Lounge. Our first encounter didn’t exactly begin well. I had been called in to play, substituting for Patricia Rice, a terrific pianist and soulful being, my friend and colleague. I hurried in behind a gentlem