Archive for the 'Entertainment' Category
Neil Diamond, Brooklyn’s favourite son and more American than apple pie, has seen his career span nearly five decades, and his appeal span the generations. Diamond has sold over 100 million albums and had his songs covered by various artists ranging from Elvis to Urge Overkill (whose rendition of Girl, You’ll Be A Woman Soon featured on Pulp Fiction’s soundtrack).
Now America The Diamond Experience can recreate the magic at your next private function. They tell us more about this unique Neil Diamond Tribute …
“America The Diamond Experience is a tribute to the legend that is Neil Diamond, bringing to the stage an eclectic collection of some of Neil Diamond’s greatest hits and songs from moving ballads such as September Morn, Hello Again to Neil’s unforgettable signature tunes such as Sweet Caroline, America and so many more.
The show has been produced to the highest standards in order to bring to the audience a memorable recreation of one of the worlds most iconic singers and performers. It can be tailored for any event and is a must for any Neil Diamond fan.
Leon Garrity not only brings the style, the voice and the magic but also manages to capture that Neil soul and spirit. The show is complemented by a world-class sound system and light show. The show’s music has been produced to the highest standards possible in order to give you the audience the emotion behind the voice. All in all seeing is believing.”
Planning a function that could use some Beautiful Noise? Head over to www.americathediamondexperience.co.uk now for more information, video, images and audio of America The Diamond Experience.39 comments
If you find yourself taking in the rarefied air of Beverly Hills, not far from the golf course where membership costs $100,000 and the toilet that cost George Michael 80 days community service, you’ll find the mansion that Rod Stewart and some model call home.
I’ve never been a fan of Stewart, but I don’t spend too much time dwelling on his crimes against music and fashion. My TV has a mute button, and I know the bars on Sunset where the tartan one won’t go. I’m also willing to accept (no matter how bizarre it may seem) that his peculiar brand of music has given him a legion of fans and with that, money enough to fuel a lifestyle of which most can only dream.
What I find impossible to ignore, though, is the fact that in 1985 Rod Stewart played ten shows at Sun City.
At the time Sun City was a resort in Bophuthatswana, a state of South Africa that the South African government had declared independent. However, this was very much an internal agreement and no other country acknowledged this ruling. Bophuthatswana was a poor black area, and the decision to declare it multiracial and place an expensive resort in the middle of it was seen as nothing less than a cynical move by the government. There was no doubt internationally that Sun City was conceived and constructed as a PR exercise by the apartheid regime.
What Sun City needed next was some international cache. Sure, the media was full of nothing but contempt for South Africa, but that was just politicians, wasn’t it? If the regime could lure some iconic names from around the globe they could demonstrate to the world that (despite the bad press) their oppressive rule was acceptable to those outside.
The UN had already issued a cultural boycott, and would thus black list anyone who defied it. Many artists were approached with the lure of a big pay day, but only a few would welcome the pouring of blood money into their already overflowing accounts.
Rod Stewart was one such artist who agreed, and while in a thankfully small minority, he is not unique. Freddie Mercury took Queen there, with guitarist Brian May offering by way of an explanation that they were not a political group. He also ventured that it was Queen’s way of fighting apartheid, which is akin to dousing a fire with gasoline.
One thing that separates Rod Stewart’s actions from those of Queen is that he didn’t play at Live Aid. Lame excuses were made for his absence, but perhaps the hypocrisy was too much for him. Not so Queen, who seemed to measure all arguments by which side pays the best. The late, legendary John Peel introduced Queen on a TV show not by name but as “the boys from Sun City”, his contempt as clear as it was justifiable.
It wasn’t just musicians that were asked by South Africa to validate the tyranny. Sports stars were also approached, and so many England cricketers agreed (including most notably, Mike Gatting), that in the late 1980s an unofficial international England team embraced apartheid. Naturally they received a ban upon their return, but they’d received more than enough money to survive, provided, of course, they could wash all the blood off it.
In the New Year Honours List, Rod Stewart is to receive a CBE (Commander Of The British Empire). This is the highest honour next to Knighthood that the monarch can bestow upon a British citizen, and apparently he is receiving it for services to music. You may like to note that another CBE is being awarded to Roger Chapman for helping save the lives of seven Russians when their submarine became trapped on the ocean floor. Some people may think this is comparable. And some people may think that Rod Stewart has actually been paid for his services to music.
Apartheid is mercifully over, but that does not absolve its supporters of their sins; only their subsequent actions can do that. If Stewart is going to leave the cosy confines of his house in the hills and step aboard a plane, he shouldn’t think about making London his first stop. If he hopes to be worthy of his new title, better he tell the pilot there’s a change of plan and the destination’s now Johannesburg. And he’d better be packing one big public apology and a cheque returning the millions he earned from Sun City. Plus interest.
For most people in the UK, if the name Mary Carey rings any bells at all it will probably be due to California’s recall election in 2003. The “adult actress” was one of the many hopefuls running for Governer, along with, among others, Terminator Arnold Schwarzenegger, model and full-time self-promoter Angelyne, Hustler owner Larry Flynt and Gary “I used to be on Diff’rent Strokes” Coleman. I’m reliably informed that’s what’s known in political circles as a dream team.
Mary Carey (real name Mary Cook) is back in the UK news, this time for incurring the wrath of songstress Mariah Carey. Mary Carey is looking to register her stage name as a trademark and launch a singing career, while Mariah Carey’s lawyers are said to be concerned that fans of the diva will get the two mistaken.
Mariah Carey’s lawyers seemingly have a low opinion of her fans. In the unlikely event they are successful in blocking Mary Carey’s application, it will be a grey day indeed for future performers who genuinely have common names not dissimilar to those of established celebrities. Of course it can be argued Mary Carey chose her stage name deliberately, and long after Mariah Carey was a household name, but I’ll mourn the day that corporate dollars can stop people trading under what is undeniably a different and legitimate name, simply on the basis that their fans are ignorant.
Meanwhile, I am left to wonder if former Archbishop Lord Carey will file a complaint of his own. One can only guess what requests Mariah Carey’s easily confused fans have been sending him over the years. In many ways I guess I should be grateful, though. As all the attention focuses on the west coast, it’s starting to look like my new death metal band, Pariah Carey, may just slip under the radar.