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New show ‘Boombox’ untangles Naughty By Nature dispute

Updated February 25, 2022 - 3:57 pm

CeeLo Green once played an upside-down piano in Las Vegas. As if mirroring that moment at the 2011 Billboard Music Awards Show at MGM Grand Garden, the new show co-starring CeeLo went topsy-turvy in announcing its schedule at Westgate Las Vegas.

“Boombox” is coming to the International Theater, where Elvis turned the city on its head. We had been teasing this show over the past few weeks. In its announcement issued Tuesday, the 1990s revival was to include Naughty By Nature along with Kid ‘N Play, J.J. Fad and Thea Austin of Snap.

The series runs May 11-15 and May 18-22 (tickets on sale 10 a.m. Friday).

But just as the show was made public, Naughty By Nature’s Vin Rock said the announcement was Naughty By No Way. The rap star posted a video on social media claiming the band was not planning any Las Vegas residency.

Uncle Vin’s video message:

“Attention, attention people. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but there is a press release going out saying Naughty By Nature is doing a Vegas residency. That is absolutely not the truth. We’ve never been approached about doing a residency, nor have we negotiated a residency play. So, I guess whoever put that press release out there must correct it immediately. If and when a residency ever goes down, you know where to get it, right here with Uncle Vin Rock. So once again, Naughty By Nature is not doing a Vegas residency anytime soon. Peace.”

Reps for the production were ready to answer Uncle Vin, saying the group’s management made a scheduling mistake. The correction was quick: The show is now going to bill the appearance as “Treach of Naughty By Nature.” It’s a reference to the recording star and actor who is NBN’s lead rapper.

We know Treach has been on property as he posed for a photo with Westgate President and General Manager Cami Christensen a couple of weeks ago.

The entirety of Naughty By Nature was featured in the “I Love The ’90s — The Las Vegas Show” that ran at Paris Theater from October to December 2018. Salt-N-Pepa was the anchor act in that dance fest, and that band’s manager, James “Jimmy” Maynes, is co-partner in VNATION, which is among the producers of “Boombox.”

The show says it’s “a Vegas residency on shuffle,” with the acts interacting alongside a DJ, drummer and dance troupe. Vintage videos are in the mix. We’d welcome CeeLo at the piano, too, landlocked or otherwise.

A little Louie

Louie Anderson’s shrunken head was unveiled at The Golden Tiki on Wednesday night. The piece was commissioned before Anderson’s death on Jan. 21. Luxor headliner Carrot Top and the currently retired hypnotist Anthony Cools joined emcee Tony Felicetta in the late-night ceremony.

“As a young comic, he was my hero, and my inspiration and why I got into comedy,” Carrot Top said. “When I came into Las Vegas, he had some great advice: ‘Don’t do props’ and I said, ‘OK.’ He really said that to me.”

David Copperfield and his producer, Chris Kenner, headed up the guests taking part in the tribute to Anderson. Carrot Top also called a toast for The Amazing Johnathan, another friend of those on hand who died Tuesday in Las Vegas. Also spotted at the club were side-act performer John Shaw, comic Rob Sherwood, who opens for Carrot Top at Luxor, and his wife, Cyndi Nelson, who runs Brad Garrett’s Comedy Club.

Sammy Hagar is next up for a ceremony. So is Copperfield. The Golden Tiki managing partner Branden Powers says he is sitting on “dozens’ of heads created during COVID. We will have many more Cool Hangs from this place.

The Oscar goes to …

Cuba Gooding Jr. was at the bar at The Golden Tiki, along with his girlfriend, Claudine De Niro, former daughter-in-law of Robert De Niro. It was an unplanned visit unrelated to the Anderson event. Gooding has reportedly been in town shooting the upcoming horror movie “Skeletons In The Closet.”

Clarkson in the mix

Kelly Clarkson will perform a tribute to Dolly Parton at the Academy of Country Music Awards show, set for 8 p.m. March 7 at Allegiant Stadium. Clarkson announced on her daytime talk show she would perform the tribute, then told everyone in the studio audience they had tickets to the event (which we’re confident will not be canceled the day before). Clarkson was excited to tell the public she’d perform, but not what she’s singing. We think medley.

Cool Hang Alert

We have heeded the call — heeded, I tell you! — of the esteemed Dave Loeb and the UNLV Division of Jazz and Commercial Music. “The Joe Williams Everyday Scholarship Foundation Fundraiser Concert” will be at 3 p.m. Sunday at Artemus Ham Hall on the UNLV campus. The show raises funds for scholarships for the UNLV Jazz Studies program’s gifted musicians. Tickets are $10; $8 for seniors, military members, UNLV faculty and staff and all students. Students may receive one free ticket with a valid ID (go to UNLV.edu or call 702-895-2787).

This tribute concert spotlights many Las Vegas resident vocalists, among them 91-year-old jazz icon Don Cunningham, Laura Taylor, Jo Belle Yonely, Naomi Mauro and Toscha Comeaux.

For good measure, or maybe great measure, comedy legend (and accomplished musician) Pete Barbutti is the emcee. Barbutti has another show at The Nevada Room on Friday night. He is busier than he’s been in years, and we like it.

John Katsilometes’ column runs daily in the A section. His “PodKats!” podcast can be found at reviewjournal.com/podcasts. Contact him at jkatsilometes@reviewjournal.com. Follow @johnnykats on Twitter, @JohnnyKats1 on Instagram.

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