This month’s MTV is a very appropriate one.
Since we’re celebrating our 500th show (!!) at the Westgate (Las Vegas Hilton), this month's MTV takes place the very first time we performed on that stage.
500 shows! Wow!
It was January 12th, 1988 and we were near the beginning of the Big Fun Tour (which morphed into the Live on Broadway Tour).
There are many things in this version of the show that we changed as the tour went on.
As an example, for the first few months of the tour, the opening of the show had me entering without any music or introduction, going straight to the piano and playing my own “overture” of recognizable intros and riffs of my hit songs.
This was a terrifying moment for me every night. Playing solo piano is not really my thing. But looking at the tape, I'm glad you can’t see me trembling in terror the way I thought I looked!
The rest of the show so inventive.
I’ll never forget our brilliant director/producer Joe Gannon describing what was going to be happening on the screen behind the band.
He told us that we would be able to put anything we could dream of on the screen behind us.
“How will that work, Joe?”, I asked.
He said, “Simple. We’ll have 60 slide machines all working together that will create one big image on the screen.”
“60 slide machines???!”, Garry and I yelled. “They’ll break down all the time, like home slide machines do.”
Joe said they wouldn’t. And we believed him.
And you know what? They never broke down.
He also described the “Magic Screen” to us, which sounded amazing.
And it was amazing.
You’ll see when it comes up at the end of this show.
I’ll always love this tour because of its inventiveness and because of all the new friends we made, both in the show (Billy, Dana, Vanessa), and in the audiences.
What great memories this one brings back.