Updated September 27, 2023 - 9:30 am
Geechy Guy had said late in his life he wanted his memorial to be, “I want it to be the best party I cannot attend.”
The wonderful Vegas comedian will get his wish 2 p.m. (doors at 1 p.m.) Wednesday at The Space. The show’s title tells it all, “Geechy Guy: A Celebration of Joke Grenades, One-Liners, Dirty Jokes … Oh, And Life!”
There is no cover for the show, being presented in The Space’s primary venue and available on livestream at mondaysdark.com.
Guy, whose legal name was Michael Paul Cathers, was found unresponsive in his bedroom on the afternoon of Sept. 7 during a wellness check by the Metropolitan Police Department. He was pronounced dead on the scene. No cause and manner of his death has been reported.
Guy had a recent history of health concerns, particularly high blood pressure.
A comic who had written a seemingly endless fountain of material, Guy was an active comedian in Las Vegas and on the cruise-ship circuit. He was most recently a primary headliner on Carnival Cruise Line. The gangly, quirky stand-up — a well-known connoisseur of cannabis — gained national fame when he knocked off Ray Romano on “Star Search” in the early 1990s.
In 2011, Guy was a quarterfinalist on NBC’s America’s Got Talent.”
Guy’s passing sent a wave of sadness across the Vegas entertainment community. The show in his and loaded with talent and goodwill. A group of friends and entertainment professionals have led Wednesday’s celebration effort:
Jerry Jones of vocal group Fifth Avenue; comic actress Penny Wiggins, for years Amazing Johnathan’s sidekick Psychic Tanya; video producer and DJ Eric Snow; comic Mat Black; Stirling Club at Turnberry Place entertainment director and multifaceted performer Kelly Clinton-Holmes; comedian/musician/songwriter Dennis Blair and his wife, Peggy; singer and comic actress Amy Solomon; David Copperfield producer Chris Kenner; Little River Band keyboardist Chris Marion; veteran comedian and Carrot Top’s opening act, Rob Sherwood; and The Space proprietor Mark Shunock teamed for the event.
“For us, as a group, it’s been very healing, a way to deal with the grief in a fun and positive way,” said Jones, who was Guy’s housemate for four years and was with the Metro team that discovered Guy had died in his sleep. “It’s something I’ll never shake, ever. But we wanted to do something to celebrate him.”
A revival of “Dirty Jokes Show,” the inspired theater piece in which Guy was featured, is planned. Black, Sherwood, Dennis Blair and “X Country” comic John Bizarre returning to the club production that played Hooters more than a decade ago. Comic performers Joe Trammel and Enoch Augustus Scott; and singers Bucky Heard of the Righteous Brothers, Sandy Knights, Kelly Vohnn, Stephanie Calvert and Anne Martinez are set to perform.
Guests will recite Guy’s greatest jokes, pulled from handwritten slips of paper in a fish bowl. Romano, Bill Maher and Brad Garrett are among the stars who have contributed video. Romano recalling how Guy KO’d him on “Star Search” is priceless. Guy filled in for Garrett in mid-1996, when Garrett was called away while he was opening for the Righteous Brothers at MGM Grand. Garrett had to break so he could begin filming a sitcom called, “Everybody Loves Raymond.”
Guy’s ex-wife, Sharon Cathers, who lives in Leawood, Kansas, is also expected to be on hand. She and Guy had been in regular contact recently, planning a trip to Europe in October. Cathers had also set up Guy’s merchandise of “Dad Joke” mugs, baseball caps and the like.
Jones also said Guy was saving to buy a house.
“He was having a good run, personally and professionally,” Jones said. “He told me more than once, ‘This is the best year of my career.’”
John Katsilometes’ column runs daily in the A section. His “PodKats!” podcast can be found at reviewjournal.com/podcasts. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow @johnnykats on X, @JohnnyKats1 on Instagram.