When rocker Vince Neil showed up to support Priscilla Presley at Nevada Ballet Theatre’s tribute to her as Woman of the Year on Saturday night, nobody really knew of their friendship. I sat with my friend Vince and his news gal pal Alicia Jacobs at the 27th Annual Black & White Ball at Aria, so it was natural that we’d talk about several things: how he became a houseguest in Priscilla’s home; how he feels about the upcoming 15-day DUI jail sentence he faces; and his reaction to reports that the IRS has a $1 million lien on his Las Vegas home.
The Motley Crue singer laughed: “I was in between wives and houses, and she was nice enough to say, ‘Hey, come stay at the chauffeur’s quarters above the garage.’ I wasn’t really homeless, but it was a transition. I was living in hotels at the time in between houses. I had met Priscilla because I did business with her former longtime beau, Marco (Garibaldi). He said instead of living in a hotel, why don’t you move to the house.
“I’d go to dinner there a lot. I was even at Navarone’s 16th birthday party and really got to know the family. It was really cool. Priscilla and I have remained friends all these years. That’s despite the fact the first time I was so nervous meeting her, I spilled my water glass. Then the next time I was even more nervous and spilled my red wine glass over her! But we laughed about it and have been friends ever since.
“She is a wonderful lady. I am very proud to know her, but having to make a speech to her has me really nervous again. I could perform to 100,000 fans in a stadium, and I wouldn’t even think about shaking. But this is the toughest thing I’ve ever had to do.”
I had to ask him then if facing the upcoming 15 days of jail for his DUI plea, followed by 15 days of house arrest, was making him nervous, as well. For the first time, he talked about it and candidly admitted: “Oh, that ordeal! I’m clicking the channels and made the mistake of watching that TV jail show that observes Clark County Detention Center. I could only say one four-letter word!
“The sentence is what it is. I’ll face it, and I’ll do it. I don’t think I am going to be put in with the general prison population. I’ll probably be with some while collar crime guy and do my time. Then I go home and do my house arrest and get this all behind me. I have absolutely learned my lesson from this. I should have learned my lesson a long time ago, but people make mistakes. It will not happen again. I’m not ready to go to prison for years and years and years. We’ll get life fully back on track after I’ve served my time. “
Vince also has been in the headlines the past few days for an unpaid IRS tax claim of $1 million that came to light after the federal agency placed a lien on his Las Vegas home. Vince commented: “There’s no lien on my house. I haven’t heard one thing about that. I think I’d have known about it if it goes back to April of last year. It’s rubbish, definitely rubbish. In the past, I’ve had tax problems like a lot of other people, especially entertainers.
“But there’s no liens --- nothing like that. I got screwed by some people a few years ago, and my accountants then messed up the way it was treated. It left me with a tax bill, but I satisfied the IRS in a deal where I pay them what they want. It’s life, unfortunately, but all satisfied and settled.”
Vince celebrates his 50th birthday at Blush at the Wynn on Saturday. His jail sentence, which was finalized in court last week, begins Feb. 15. He had faced 6 months, but in a plea bargain accepted the 15-15 split, with an apology, saying: “I have recognized that you can’t drink and drive at all.”
Robin Leach has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past decade giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.
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