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January 16, 2018

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‘Million Dollar Quartet’ banking on Holly Madison’s ‘Viva Las Vegas’ revival


Holly Madison Diet for

Holly Madison and Pasquale Rotella Wed on Sept. 10, 2013

Holly Madison and Pasquale Rotella’s wedding on Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2013, at Disneyland in Anaheim, Calif. Madison is pictured here with her bridesmaids. Launch slideshow »

The Kats Report Bureau at this writing is an undisclosed pizzeria.

Oh. Did I give it away?

You know what they say about pizza: Even when it’s not very good, it’s still pretty good. But around here, we’re one pie short of a Shakey’s.

It’s rake time:

• Holly Madison is joining the cast of “Million Dollar Quartet” as the latest in a series of guest stars in the show at Harrah’s. The date for Madison’s walk-on has yet to be determined, and by that we mean the night, not who will escort her. It’ll likely be around early December.

The performance will be Madison’s first appearance onstage since she left “Peepshow” at Planet Hollywood on Oct. 21, 2012. The song she’ll sing is “The Lady Loves Me,” delivered by Elvis Presley and Ann-Margret in “Viva Las Vegas.”

Madison herself has designs on producing a stage show on the Strip and is watching closely the development and performance of shows in the city. Looking to boost buzz about its own production, the “MDQ” crew contacted her in its continuing campaign to cross-promote the show with performers in the city.

Since early August, Veronic DiCaire of Bally’s, Taylor Hicks of Paris Las Vegas and Frankie Moreno of the Stratosphere have all joined the cast at the end of “MDQ” performances. In a text, Madison said, “They thought of the number, of course to fit in with Elvis, and I thought it would be a lot of fun to do.”

Click to enlarge photo

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee Quincy Jones is interviewed after a news conference to announce the 2013 inductees in Los Angeles on Dec. 11, 2013.

2013 Keep Memory Alive 'Power of Love' Gala at MGM Grand

Quincy Jones, Stevie Wonder, Whoopi Goldberg and Sir Michael Caine at the 2013 Keep Memory Alive Launch slideshow »

• In April as his soul mate Michael Caine and he were to celebrate their 80th birthdays at the Keep Memory Alive gala to benefit Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health, I asked Quincy Jones whether he had seen the touring version of Cirque’s “Michael Jackson’s Immortal” and what he thought of the upcoming Cirque-Jackson show, “Michael Jackson One,” at Mandalay Bay.

“You don’t want to ask that question,” he said.

Now we know why. On Friday, Jones filed a lawsuit in Los Angeles claiming he was cut out of a producer credit on music used in the "This Is It" documentary. The suit claims Jackson’s estate altered some of the superstar’s music that was produced by Jones, thus depriving him of royalties and other profits from the latest projects using Jackson’s songs.

The suit also claims that the way he was cut out of both Jackson-Cirque projects constitutes a breach of contract, as “Immortal” and “One” have featured songs originally produced by Jones, including enormously popular hits "Don’t Stop 'Til You Get Enough" and "Thriller." Jones produced “Off The Wall,” “Thriller” and “Bad” and had a 35-year professional and personal relationship with Jackson, which is, sadly, playing out in court.

• Bill Fayne is taking over the Copa Room, just behind the Bootlegger Bistro on Las Vegas Boulevard South, for a new showcase titled “Bill Fayne & Friends.” These shows are at 7 p.m. Wednesdays and are to feature a different performance with a different set of artists each week. Fayne’s offering Wednesday is a sampling of his show “The Book of Merman,” as in “Ethel.” On Nov. 6, it’s Broadway classics with Ron and Lisa Smith, George DeMott and Zipporah Peddle. The cost is $10, and with entry you receive a coupon for a free bottle of wine with a meal at the Bootlegger, which works out to about free.

After the shows, the scene shifts to an open-mic night similar to the format at Don’t Tell Mama on Fremont Street. This is still in the building stages as Fayne, the longtime music director for (and even longer-time friend of) Clint Holmes, remains among the busiest artists in the city.

• Out of “Vegas! The Show” but still keeping active is that show’s onetime vocalist Lou Gazzara. On Friday night, he was the center of Kenny Davidson’s chic little weekly showcast at Tuscany’s T Spot. Gazzarra left “Vegas!” as Josh Strickland joined the show and says he is now looking for a new regular gig. He’s grown a closely groomed beard and sounded terrific on Friday, especially when opening up with Queen’s “The Show Must Go On,” which, intentionally or not, may have been a personal message.

Davidson’s shows are 10 p.m. to 2 a.m., no cover or minimum. The room is active all week with a variety of genres covered, including jazz, Latin, country and even Joe Lowers’ comedy night. Check the schedule here.

• On the topic of Tuscany and the T Spot, Anne Martinez (“Dancing Queen”) and Savannah Smith (“Vegas! The Show” and the swing in “Pin Up” at the Stratosphere) have booked Nov. 26 as the date to showcase the latest version of the vocal act BBR. David Perrico (“Pin Up” and “Pop Evolution”) has written the charts for two of the top singers around. All they need is a room and resources (the magic parlay of Vegas entertainment), and the show at T Spot is the next step.

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