Show 1: Friday Night, Russell Brand @ Mandalay Bay
He talks like a Brit Lit made-for-TV miniseries and he looks like ghetto Jesus. He’s not just funny; he’s uplifting. Most comics shoot down hecklers; Brand worked them into his act. Treated their words with respect, even.
Lots of Englishmen in attendance—the mention of Jonathan Ross got a round of applause—and lots of locals, too. My favorite joke of the evening? What Brand said to Serena Williams when he was trying to pick her up: “Congratulations on being so good at tennis.”
Show 2: Saturday Night, The Platters, The Coasters, & The Marvelettes @ Rio
The Coasters sang “Poison Ivy” first. I’ve never heard this song before, but I’ll be damned if my parents didn’t know every single lyric. That goes for pretty much every song we heard that night.
The Platters went up second. One of the group’s (current) members, Gregory Carter, looks just like President Obama. According to the woman sitting next to me, at least. “It’s not every day your president sings ‘Smoke Gets in Your Eyes’ for your entertainment pleasure,” she said.
My dad freaked out when the Marvelettes almost called him on stage. But they didn’t, so in the end, he was thrilled with his gift. The Crown Theater is a tough venue, but the groups sounded great.