Posts Tagged ‘The Sopranos’

Las Vegas Lowdown

September 23, 2010

Wednesday September 22nd, 2010 – Las Vegas, NV

I love Las Vegas. In a perfect world, I’d have lived here at least for a while by now and laid down some kind of networking base to return to often. I wish I had more connections out here, but I totally don’t. Other than a few showcases over the years, I’ve never had an opportunity to work out here and that’s too bad. I think Mr. Lucky would be a perfect fit.

Whatever comedy boom there was out here appears to be over. I heard the club scene is brutal, and apparently the Riviera is closing their comedy club that’s been open for years. I did a showcase there years ago for Steve Schirripa, who later went on to an acting career in The Sopranos. He used to run the club and I got in through my friend George Miller.

I passed my audition but I thought Steve Schirripa was a maniac and never called to get any bookings. He’s a huge guy and can be intimidating, and I didn’t want to deal with any of that at the time. In hindsight, I should have gotten hired and taken my chances. I didn’t need the work then, and was getting hired all I wanted. Those days are gone for everyone.

I still get hired in enough places to keep me alive, but it wouldn’t have hurt to lay down a few comedy roots here, as it’s an entertainment town. No – it’s THE entertainment town in all the world. Why would I want to know people here? I doubt if that could help any.

This is yet another in my laundry list of stupid mistakes, but it’s too late now. I did what I did, and that’s it. I have connections in places like Salt Lake City and Pittsburgh. I don’t mind working in those places, but it would be a lot sexier to have yearly stops in Vegas to flesh out my booking schedule. I never thought to develop that until it was way too late.

Still, I enjoy coming out here and hope to hook on somewhere at some point so I’d have a reason to come out more often. I could totally see a billboard with ‘Mr. Lucky at Wynn’ next to Cher or Wayne Newton. George Wallace seems to be the new king of comedy out here, and good for him for claiming the title. He’s charismatic, funny and can pull it off.

I really think I could fit in well too though. I’d love a situation where I could set up my own space and stay out here for a while. I heard George Wallace has a deal to keep him in town for multiple years, and that’s great. That would be the ultimate super dream gig in a perfect world, and maybe the ship gigs are training me for it. Those audiences are similar.

I’m just going to enjoy my time here this week and not worry about anything else. I had a fantastic dinner with my friend Dan O’Bryan, a former comedy student who now lives a few miles north of town. He’s also a former radio guy with a set of deep booming pipes to prove it. Like me and everyone else, he got sick of the insanity of radio and left the game.

Dan is one of the reasons I keep teaching comedy classes. People like him and so many others have crossed my path in life and made it a lot richer. He’s always been supportive and still is, and it was great to sit back and hang out for a while. He totally gets the plight of any entertainer, as he’s one too. I’m grateful for good friends and time to enjoy them.