Talking With Linda Smith – April 25, 2019

Talking With Linda Smith – April 25, 2019

This week, Ira spoke with Linda Smith. To listen to the interview click below.

Linda Smith, who Las Vegans know as the fundraising pillar of Opportunity Village for nearly 40 years, is the author of “Unwanted”: How a Mother Learned to Turn Shame, Grief and Fear into Purpose, Passion and Empowerment.”

In this 30-minute episode of Talk About Las Vegas, Smith talks about the challenges she faced growing up; the additional long-term obstacles she faced with her disabled son, Christopher; how she ended up in Las Vegas; fwhy she had to fight to keep her son in the United States; the lessons she learned about persistence and attitude; and how she was able to focus on fundraising over the decades.

Author, speaker and non-profit consultant, Smith is recognized as a fundraising icon within the Las Vegas community and across the globe. After 38 years of leading one of the largest and well-known non-profit organizations in Las Vegas, Smith launched a consulting business in 2016 as a way to connect donors with deserving charities, while providing visionary ideas and various fundraising approaches for non-profits. 

Inspired by her eldest son, Smith established The Christopher Smith Foundation in her son’s name, and her new book chronicles how her life as a childhood abuse survivor and mother of a disabled son inspired her to become an advocate for people with disabilities within the non-profit world.  

http://www.livelindaslife.com


Play

Talking With Tom Rhodes – April 18, 2019

Talking With Tom Rhodes – April 18, 2019


This week, Ira spoke with Tom Rhodes. To listen to the interview click below.

Comedian Tom Rhodes (whose new album, “Around The World,” was recorded in 24 cities) is headlining in the Laugh Factory at the Tropicana Las Vegas April 22-28.

In this 30-minute episode of Talk About Las Vegas, Rhodes talks about his love of travel; his addiction to the adrenal rush of performing; why he “put my career above everything in my life”; why he’s a big fan of  both Winston Churchill and ephemera; what he learned from John McEnroe and applied to stand-up comedy; and why, when it comes to comedy, “I’m in it for life.”

Rhodes is a world traveling comedian who is now celebrating his 30th year as a stand up comedian.  The New York Times  describes him as “A mostly natural intellect with a knack for reporting the harsh realities of life with a dark and absurdly optimistic cynicism.”

An adventurer forging his own path, Rhodes has built a career that not only includes stand-up specials,  a sitcom,  a travel show,  a late night talk show,  numerous live CD’s & DVD’s,  his critically acclaimed podcast Tom Rhodes Radio, as well as being a travel writer for the Huffington Post.

http://www.troplv.com

http://www.tomrhodes.net

Play

Talking With Tyler Kepner – April 11, 2019

Talking With Tyler Kepner – April 11, 2019

Photo by Eric Broder

This week, Ira spoke with Tyler Kepner. To listen to the interview click below.

New York Times baseball writer Tyler Kepner is author of  “K: A History of Baseball in Ten Pitches,” published by Doubleday, which traces the story behind each pitch, as far back as the 19th century.

In this 30-minute episode of Talk About Las Vegas, Kepner talks about his lifelong love of baseball; the characteristics of the pitcher and the integral part he plays in the game; the history and development of each unique pitch; interviews with the players who have contributed to the lore of baseball through their pitching styles; and why baseball is here to stay. 

Kepner has been reporting on NY Yankees since 2002.  Before that he had covered the NY Mets since 2000.  Prior to joining The Times, Kepner covered the Seattle Mariners for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer from 1998-1999.  

Previously he wrote about the Anaheim Angels for the Riverside Press-Enterprise from 1997-1998. Kepner Graduated from Vanderbilt University with a B.A. degree in 1997.  He attended Vanderbilt on the Grandtland Rice-Fred Russel Sports Writing Scholarship.  

Born in Philadelphia, he currently lives in Stamford, CT with his wife and children.  

Twitter: @TylerKepner

https://www.milb.com/las-vegas

Play

Talking With Matt Stell – April 4, 2019

Talking With Matt Stell – April 4, 2019

This week, Ira spoke with Matt Stell. To listen to the interview click below.

Country Music artist Matt Stell, brings his unique style to Las Vegas when he performs an all-ages free show at Topgolf Las Vegas on  April 6.

In this 30-minute episode of Talk About Las Vegas, Stell talks about his popular single, “Prayed For You”; the meaningfulness of his April 27th Grand Ole Opry debut; why he loves the narrative lyrics of country music; the enduring creative appeal of living and working in Nashville; why he learned who you are and what you want to be are not the same thing; and how it’s hard to turn loose of a dream.

Born in central Arkansas and raised there as well as central Florida, Stell’s path to making music was unconventional. He has written songs with artists like Casey Donahew, Bart Crow and John D. Hale Band, in which these artists have put these songs on their CDs, and, in some cases, released them as radio singles. “Whiskey Baby” and “Small Town Love,” two songs co-written with Donahew, both reached No. 1 on the Texas regional radio charts. 

Following through on the success of these and other music releases, he decided to make the move to Nashville to pursue writing and making music at the highest level. When Stell’s not playing shows across the South and Midwest, he spends most of his time writing songs for himself and other artists.

http://www.topgolf.com

http://www.mattstell.com


Play

Talking With Shep Gordon – March 28, 2019

Talking With Shep Gordon – March 28, 2019

This week, Ira spoke with Shep Gordon. To listen to the interview click below.

Shep Gordon, in addition to managing many of the top artists who have headlined in Las Vegas, was named one of the 100 most influential people in Rolling Stone magazine; was the subject of the Mike Myers 2013 documentary, “Supermensch The Legend of Shep Gordon” ; and is the author of “They Call Me SuperMensch, A backstage pass to the amazing worlds of film, food, and Rock ’n’ Roll.”

In this 30-minute episode of Talk About Las Vegas, Gordon talks about the balance between living in Hawaii and his frantic career; how he got the title “Super Mensch”; the start of celebrity chefs in Las Vegas, working with Elizabeth Blau (who he credits with fusing the fame of chefs with a winnable business model; working with Raquel Welch on her act for Las Vegas; cooking for the Dalai Lama; and learning to be of service to others.

Gordon is known in the entertainment industry as having an eye for talent and an innate understanding of what people find entertaining.  After graduating from SUNY Buffalo, he moved to Los Angeles and in 1969 co-founded Alive Enterprises. Over the years, he has been responsible for managing the careers of Alice Cooper, Groucho Marx, Raquel Welch, Luther Vandross, Kenny Loggins, and countless others.

He’s also credited as creating the celebrity chef,  which revolutionized the food industry and turned the culinary arts into the multi-billion dollar industry it is today.  His clients included culinary legends Wolfgang Puck, Emeril Lagasse, Nobu, Daniel Boulud and many more.

http://www.shepgordon.com

Play

Talking With Cindy Williams – March 21, 2019

Talking With Cindy Williams – March 21, 2019

This week, Ira spoke with Cindy Williams. To listen to the interview click below.

Cindy Williams will be performing in the world premiere of MIDDLETOWN, a play about love, life, and friendship, debuting at Myron’s Cabaret Jazz at The Smith Center March 31-April 1 for four performances.

In this 30-minute episode of Talk About Las Vegas, Williams talks about the origins of her sense of humor, starting with her family dynamic; her decision to become a nurse (which didn’t happen); her entry into show business; the impact of “Laverne and Shirley” on her career and its enduring appeal; and the importance of the audience to a play (she considers the audience the other “character” in the play).

MIDDLETOWN is launched by GFour Productions, producers of Menopause The Musical and Tony-nominated Fiddler On The Roof in partnership with Bucks County Playhouse in New Hope, Pennsylvania, and Delaware Theatre Company of Wilmington, Deleware. In addition to Cindy Williams, the cast includes Didi Conn (Frenchy the beauty school dropout in “Grease”); Donny Most, known for his role as Ralph Malph in the hit TV show “Happy Days”; and Adrian Zmed, best known for his starring roles in the “Bachelor Party” and TV’s “T.J. Hooker.”

Williams is best known for her role as Shirley Feeney in the television series “Laverne and Shirley,” which recently won the TV Land award for “Fan Favorite.” She was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (2004) and won Best Actress at the LA Comedy Film Festival for the indy film “Stealing Roses.” She recently completed the first national tour of Nunset Boulevard a sequel to Nunsense,where she reprised her role as Reverend Mother.

http://www.thesmithcenter.com
http://www.thisiscindywilliams.com

Play

Talking With John L. Smith – March 14, 2019

Talking With John L. Smith – March 14, 2019

This week, Ira spoke with John L. Smith. To listen to the interview click below.

John L. Smith is author of “Westside Slugger: Joe Neal’s Lifelong Fight for Social Justice,” which presents the story of civil rights in Las Vegas and Nevada through the eyes and experience of Joe Neal, a history-making state lawmaker. The book is published by University of Nevada Press

In this 30-minute episode of Talk About Las Vegas, Smith talks about Senator Neal’s experience as a young man, which forged in him a determination for taking strong stands on unpopular (at the time) political and civil rights issues; his tenacity in promoting ideas and laws that were challenging to the status quo; his decision to enter politics; and the impact he left on both the political process and Nevada itself.

Nevada native Smith is a freelance writer, journalist, and author of more than a dozen books. He writes an award-winning weekly column for The Nevada Independent, offers weekly commentary on National Public Radio station KNPR, is a stringer for Reuters and a contributor to The Daily Beast and other publications.

Smith spent three decades as a daily columnist with the Las Vegas Review-Journal, the state’s largest newspaper, and garnered many state and national awards for his work. In 2016, he was part of a group of the Las Vegas Review-Journal staffers to receive the Ancil Payne Award for Ethics from the University of Oregon, the Society of Professional Journalists award for Ethics, and the Medill Medal for Courage from Northwestern University.

Smith was featured in the 2017 Brian Knappenberger documentary “Nobody Speak: Trials of the Free Press,” available on Netflix. He splits his time living in Las Vegas, NV and Santa Fe, New Mexico.

http://www.jlnevadasmith.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/jlnevadasmith

Play

Talking With Kenny Lattimore – March 7, 2019

Talking With Kenny Lattimore – March 7, 2019

This week, Ira spoke with Kenny Lattimore. To listen to the interview click below.

Grammy Award nominated singer songwriter Kenny Lattimore will be performing in the Chrome Showroom at Santa Fe Station Hotel and Casino on March 9th at 8 p.m.

In this 30-minute episode of Talk About Las Vegas, Lattimore talks about his love of music; the influence of his mother on his career; singing with a band at age 15; knowing he was in it for the long haul; the catharsis of being on stage; his commitment to maintaining success, which is harder than achieving it; and how his foundation helps introduce young students to the wonders of music.

Lattimore’s career spans more than two decades, highlighted by his 1996 breakthrough single “Never Too Busy,” followed by the wedding staple “For You,” Grammy recognition, several top-10 singles and Top 20 R&B albums.

Other stand-out projects by Lattimore include the critically-acclaimed albums, From The Soul Of Man, Timeless and Anatomy of a Love Song, which produced the Top 10 single “Love Me Back.” A Kenny Lattimore Christmas was nominated for a Stellar Award for “Event CD of the Year.”

Lattimore’s ninth studio album, Vulnerable, produced yet another Top 10 hit single, “Stay on Your Mind,” which climbed the charts to #7 on UAC Billboard, while holding top radio positions in multiple U.S. markets.

http://www.santafestation.sclv.com
http://www.kennylattimore.com

Play

Talking With Randall Cannon – February 28, 2019

Talking With Randall Cannon – February 28, 2019

This week, Ira spoke with Randall Cannon. To listen to the interview click below.

Randall Cannon is author of “Stardust International Raceway, Motorsports Meets the Mob in Vegas, 1965-1971,” a look at a unique intersection of historic forces, the biggest racing names of the era and a venue that remains but a memory for many.

In this 30-minute episode of Talk About Las Vegas, Cannon talks about his childhood connection to the raceway; the untold story that took three years to research; his exclusive interview with Irwin Molasky, one of the key people involved with the project; and his first interview, after starting the book, with Mario Andretti.

Cannon is a former motocross racer and a lifelong motorsports enthusiast. He grew up in rustic 1960’s Las Vegas and attended numerous professional and local race events at the long-shuttered Stardust International Raceway.

Returning to the Las Vegas Valley in 2010, Cannon pondered the history of the raceway, and the void of readily available information. He began to put together the pieces of the first authoritative study of Stardust International Raceway, published by McFarland Books.

https://www.facebook.com/stardust.raceway.book/
https://mcfarlandbooks.com/

Play

Talking With Steve Bornfeld – February 21, 2019

Talking With Steve Bornfeld – February 21, 2019

This week, Ira spoke with Steve Bornfeld. To listen to the interview click below.

Steve Bornfeld is managing editor of the new Las Vegas Newswire, a website that showcases people and institutions active in tourism in Southern Nevada, and how they contribute to the area itself.

In this 30-minute episode of Talk About Las Vegas, Bornfeld talks about his decision to move here; the launch of Las Vegas Newswire, a website that showcases people and institutions active in tourism in Southern Nevada; the contributions they make to the area itself; how stories are developed and covered; and the uniqueness of Las Vegas in terms of entertainment, gaming, and sports.

Originally from The Bronx, N.Y., Steve Bornfeld is a veteran journalist, having spent 35 years in daily newspapers and magazines in New York, Pennsylvania, Tennessee and, for the past 22 years, in Las Vegas.

As an entertainment/feature writer, editor and columnist, his work has appeared in the New York Post, the Boston Herald, the Hollywood Reporter and the Gannett and Hearst newswires, as well as locally in the Las Vegas Review-Journal, Las Vegas Sun, Las Vegas Weekly, Vegas Seven, Las Vegas Life, Desert Companion and Showbiz Weekly.

He has been honored with multiple state, regional and national journalism awards from the Nevada Press Association, Best of the West journalism contest and the Society for Features Journalism.
Beginning his career in 1983 as an education and general assignment reporter, Bornfeld went on to write on a vast array of topics from television and radio to stage and film to music and the Las Vegas Strip, interviewing hundreds of actors, musicians and artists along the way.

As a Bronx boy at heart, his only complaint about Las Vegas is that he can’t take the subway to work.

http://www.lasvegasnewswire.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/LVNewswire

Play