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March 20, 2019

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Santana sets release date for ‘Santana IV’; ONJ and Marie Osmond bond at NBT

Santana's Memorabilia Case at Hard Rock Hotel

Erik Kabik/Retna/

Cindy Blackman and Carlos Santana at the Hard Rock Hotel for the unveiling of the Santana memorabilia display on April 12, 2011.

Carlos Santana at Opportunity Village

Carlos Santana visits and makes donations of musical instruments at Opportunity Village on Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2015, in Las Vegas. Alberto Kreimerman, CEO of Hermes Music, is at left.
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Maroon 5 Rocks The Pearl at the Palms

Maroon 5 and frontman Adam Levine at The Pearl in the Palms on Sept. 17, 2011. Launch slideshow »

The Kats Report Bureau at this writing is Mizuya lounge at Mandalay Bay, where the band of the moment is The Limit, fronted by John Lombardo, an original singing gondolier at the Venetian and stellar rock vocalist. The tune is “Another Brick in the Wall,” the Pink Floyd classic and a fair way to end a weekend in VegasVille.

This scene reminds of an item I pocketed a few weeks ago involving The Paul Charles Band, fronted by Paul Charles Campanella and another of the really good rock acts to play this space. On New Year’s Eve, Adam Levine and James Valentine of Maroon 5, who were playing Mandalay Bay Events Center on Dec. 30 and 31, abruptly joined The Paul Charles Band.

Valentine played guitar and Levine later climbed behind the drums for “Just What I Needed” by The Cars, “Message in a Bottle” by The Police, “Sugar” by Maroon 5 and The Weeknd’s “I Can’t Feel My Face.” The Paul Charles Band is back at Mizuya on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday. The gig is at 10 p.m., and you’ll recognize the band by its singer, who looks a lot like Levine.

In a larger sense, music just pours out of Mandalay Bay, and over at House of Blues, superstar resident Carlos Santana has announced the release date of “Santana IV,” which is April 15. The first single, “Anywhere You Want to Go,” is out Feb. 5.

“Santana IV” is the highly anticipated reunion album that returned Gregg Rolie, Neal Schon, Michael Carabello and Michael Shrieve to the studio for the first time since recording “Santana III” in 1971 (the album was recorded at Odds On Studio in Henderson through 2014 and 2015).

Santana’s band has been updated significantly since his most recent appearances at HOB in November. As he promised, his wife, Cindy Blackman, has left Lenny Kravitz’s band and is taking the drums in place of Las Vegas favorite Pepe Jimenez of Santa Fe & The Fat City Horns.

Jimenez had been working with Santana for the past couple of years as a replacement for Dennis Chambers, who had backed Santana for more than a decade. Santana’s singer is new, too, as Ray Greene of Tower of Power is in for Tony Lindsey, who has spent three stints with the band dating to 1991. I’m due to chat with Carlos on Tuesday about what has already been an electric start to 2016.

More from the scene:

2016 NBT Woman of the Year

Flamingo headliner singer Olivia Newton-John, left, with Leeza Gibbons, Marie Osmond and Mary Wilson, is honored as Nevada Ballet Theatre Woman of the Year at the Black & White Ball on Saturday, Jan. 23, 2016, at Wynn Las Vegas. Launch slideshow »

• Nevada Ballet Theatre’s Black & White Ball was once more a celebration of the city’s artistic heritage, philanthropic spirit and pure star power. A superstar friend and contemporary, Marie Osmond, joined this year’s Woman of the Year honoree, Olivia Newton-John, onstage.

The speech by Osmond introducing Newton-John to the crowd at Wynn Las Vegas’ Latour Ballroom was a dandy. She recalled meeting Newton-John during “The Donny & Marie Show” in the late 1970s, and that Newton-John was so vocally flawless, sweet and pretty that Osmond couldn’t find any reason to resent her.

Osmond also said that her brother Donny, a heartthrob of the time whose posters graced millions of bedroom walls in those days, actually had a poster of Newton-John on his wall. “The secret is out!” Osmond said, smiling. A lengthy videomontage of Newton-John’s career was played, covering her time as a young country star through “Grease,” “Xanadu,” “Physical” (great use of Spandex and headband) and her walk across the Great Wall of China to mark her battle with breast cancer.

Paying tribute via video were such stars as Barry Manilow, “Grease” and “Two of a Kind” co-star John Travolta, Julianne Hough (of the new-generation “Grease”), Didi Conn (of the original “Grease”), Jane Lynch (a “Glee” connection) and Richard Marx.

Newton-John took the stage and said, “Wow, I did all that?” The body of work, including 100 million records sold, 10 No. hits and the legacy of “Grease” and her continuing run at Flamingo, is truly remarkable.

This was a gala characteristic of NBT’s great goodwill in Las Vegas. Honored with the Nancy Award, named for NBT co-founder Nancy Houssels, was Wendy Plaster (and apologies to Plaster for turning her surname into a vocation — Plasterer — last week, which was an accident).

Event Chairwoman Gillian Wynn spoke to the dedication of those who created and have evolved the company over its 44-year history; Venetian headliners Human Nature performed to open; and NBT Future Dance Team performed to a “Grease” medley.

Wynn also introduced a performance of modern dance by Michia Eberhardt, a young artist studying at Ailey School in New York and graduate of the Future Dance Program, which is in its 24th year and serves more than 16,000 students each year through its many programs.

What’s next? Conversations are already beginning to select the 2017 Woman of the Year. We have ideas, for sure — just aim high. Being honored by NBT is a tall order, and ONJ is a tough act to follow.

The Amazing Johnathan Weds Anastasia Synn

The wedding of The Amazing Johnathan and Anastasia Synn at A Special Memory Chapel, with reception at Geisha House, in Las Vegas. Launch slideshow »

• If you are not already planned out, a couple of fundraising shows to note this evening. A fundraiser to help Penny Wiggins (Psychic Tanya for The Amazing Johnathan for many years) is set for 8:30 p.m. at Baobab Stage at Town Square.

This show represents the first stage appearance by A.J. in Las Vegas in two years, and the night hosts a lineup of performers well known in Las Vegas, including mentalist Banachek and magicians Stefan Vanel and Krystyn Lambert from Criss Angel’s “The Supernaturalists” touring show. Tickets are $20 at the door.

And, lest we forget, “Mondays Dark” is back at Vinyl in the Hard Rock Hotel with a rollout of songs from “Anchorman.” Contrary to popular assumption, Mark Shunock was not a cast member in that film, but his “Rock of Ages” castmates and he are reopening at the Rio on Tuesday night. Show time for “Mondays Dark” is 9:30 p.m., benefitting Clark County Injured Police Fund, and tickets also are $20 at the door.

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