If you have lived in Las Vegas for more than 25 years, you have possibly driven by, or even stopped in and had dinner, at Piero’s Italian Cuisine, 355 Convention Center Drive, truly just a hop, skip and a jump, from the Las Vegas Convention Center. It had been nearly 20 years since I last sat and had dinner in the place that “The Man” Frank Sinatra, used to call his place–where he could eat peacefully, meet quietly with friends, and just hang out.
When I heard that a dear friend of mine, Pia Zadora, was going to be appearing there, along with my buddy, Vince Falcone, there was no question I had to go back to place that I once enjoyed an awful lot during my younger years in the village. It hasn’t changed that much either. When you walk through the door, you can actually smell the history: Not only of Sinatra and his Rat Pack gang, but a lot of the mob guys would be there having a casual dinner or a few drinks. It was definitely the place to go to if you didn’t mind being seen saying hello to a few guys (who were probably being watched by a branch of some federal police department or an under-cover Metro officer). Anyhow, back to Pia.
This is a dynamic lady with what I will call a throwback voice. It’s a really sweet voice, with a touch of smoky huskiness that she uses very carefully. I would say, and I think Zadora would agree, she shines at Piero’s as a saloon singer. Sinatra was a saloon singer. Robert Goulet loved to sing what he called, “saloon songs.” And, Pia has a great range of music to present, considering she sings the music of the “Great American Song Book,” and shares a few stories about her favorite guy, Frank. There is no doubt she loved and admired the man. She pays him proper respect by singing a few of his classics during every performance. And who better to conduct, but Vinnie, who was Frank’s conductor for more than 10 years, and was Pia’s conductor when she traveled with a symphony orchestra. With the leadership of Falcone on the Baby Grand, Joe Lano on guitar, Bob Saxe on bass, and Mike Mechem on percussion, the petite lady from Hoboken, New Jersey, opened right away with one of my favorites, “That Old Black Magic.” It reminded me of the night I got married at the old Stardust Hotel, and Billy Daniels sang it for my bride and me. To give you an idea of what to expect, I’ll name just a few of the songs she selected the particular night I was at Piero’s: “Lady is a Tramp,” “Time after Time,” “Penny’s From Heaven,” “The Man I Love,” “Where or When,” and of course, “New York, New York.”
This is a lady who knows how to sell a song, tell a story, and laugh about herself. She is having fun every Thursday through Saturday, starting at 9 p.m. There is a cover charge, by the way, but gang, this is what Vegas used to be like, and from what I hear, the entertainers who live here are making their way to Piero’s once again to see and listen to one of their own—Pia Zadora!
THIS AND THAT QUICKLY:
The sizzling beauties from “Fantasy,” will host a special “Frisky Friday” Halloween-themed bash Friday, Oct. 25, at Lax Nightclub, located inside Luxor Hotel and Casino. The gorgeous dancers will celebrate the release of their 2014 “Unleash Your FANTASY,” calendar where they will show off the stunning images from their most exotic calendar to date. Dressed in sexy Halloween attire, the FANTASY cast will sign and give away its exclusive calendar to fans throughout the evening. Guests who present their FANTASY ticket stub at the door will receive complimentary VIP entry into LAX Nightclub. Shot by renowned photographer Oscar Picazo, the “Unleash Your FANTASY” calendar captures each FANTASY showgirl in stunning animal print body paint. A visual treat for each month of 2014, the calendar showcases each dancer as a different animal in striking surroundings and, as a bonus, two months of 2013 also are featured. Celebrating 14 successful years on The Strip, FANTASY was named “Best Showgirls,” in the Las Vegas Review-Journal 2012 “Best of Las Vegas” poll, and has shaped itself into one of Las Vegas’ leading topless shows. New to the cast, lead singer Jaime Lynch, adds an exciting and unforgettable element with her amazing powerhouse vocals as she takes center-stage alongside a talented cast of beautiful dancers. FANTASY performs nightly at 10:30 p.m. in the Atrium Showroom at Luxor. Tickets start at $39, plus taxes and handling fees. Guests must be 18 years of age or older.
Fans of the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series will have not one, but two opportunities to meet their favorite drivers and riders prior to the start of the NHRA Toyota Nationals, at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. NHRA will host a free “Fanfest,” on the Third Street Stage at the Fremont Street Experience, downtown Las Vegas, from 5:00-7:00 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 24. Musical entertainment and prize drawings will begin at 5:00 p.m. The driver autograph session will take place from 5:30-6:30 p.m. Among the many drivers scheduled to participate are Courtney Force, Shawn Langdon, Jeg Coughlin Jr. and Del Worsham. A second free driver autograph session, featuring all Don Schumacher Racing drivers – Tony Schumacher, Antron Brown, Spencer Massey, Johnny Gray, Ron Capps, Jack Beckman and Matt Hagan – is scheduled for 6:00-8:00 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 24, in the casino lobby at the New York-New York Hotel & Casino. The NHRA Toyota Nationals will be held Oct. 24-27 at The Strip. Twice each year the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series attracts the biggest names in professional drag racing to one of America’s Greatest Drag Strips. Experience blazing speeds in excess of 320 miles per hour, powered by nitro methane-burning engines, producing more than 7,000 horsepower. Pro (Top Fuel Dragster, Funny Car and Pro Stock) qualifying will take place on Friday and Saturday, with eliminations on Sunday. Children 12 and under will be admitted free. To purchase tickets or obtain additional information, please call LVMS at (702) 644-4444 or visit www.LVMS.com. Follow LVMS on Facebook and Twitter.
The Fielding West Comedy and Magic Show will appear this Friday, October 25, at 7:00 p.m., in the Sun City MacDonald Ranch (Desert Willow Golf Course Clubhouse), 2020 West Horizon Ridge Pkwy, Henderson. Fielding is a long time veteran of the Las Vegas Strip and late night TV comedy shows. Also appearing with Fielding is comedy juggler Michael Goudeau. Michael worked for years in the Lance Burton Show, and was featured in, Penn & Teller’s Showtime Series, “Bullshit.” Also, appearing is Fielding’s long-time partner, Bob, who recently turned 19. Bob, the bird, is, without question, the smartest bird in showbiz. Also appearing as the MC of the show is, Don Martinez. Tickets are priced at $12 for Sun City MacDonald Ranch residents and $15 for all others.
Well, gang, that’s about it for this week.