By Sandy Zimmerman
(Photos by Sandy Zimmerman)
Elisa and Bruce appear in the “Beauty and the Beat” big band show on Friday, November 9. This is one of the few times the public have a chance to experience a 19 piece big band!
Elisa invited the public, “We hope people will come out and swing with us getting back to the moments of the way music used to be. We love doing what we do, sharing this music with the beat of the drums and the beauty on the mic.
Elisa changes their songs each time so each concert is different, “We’re singing “Old Devil Moon”, “Midnight Sun”, “Beyond the Sea”, “Cheek to Cheek”, “I’m Beginning to See the Light”, “I Love Being Here with You.”
Bruce has been performing on the drums all his life since he was four years old. He explained, “My dad brought big band records home and I played along. My first real band was a little Dixie Land band with friends from elementary school. From the time I was 12, I had my first big band in the 5th grade. They had a jazz band in middle school and I made that band in the 7th grade.”
Elisa added, “He’s the beat, one of the best!”
Elisa began at five, singing in a cup comparing the echo to a mic. “I’d shut the curtains in the living room then open them and start the show.
Later I performed weekly on Al Albert’s showcase talent show, he was one of the “Four Aces”, did commercials then appeared on Broadway at 15 but the show closed in one month.”
Sandy asked, “Anything to do with you?”
Elisa, “It wasn’t my fault Yule Brenner needed our theater so we got booted out. He took our spot for “The King and I”.
That’s when I met Prince which got me out of the record business, I started doing jazz and 20 years later Prince called and I moved to Las Vegas where I met Bruce.”
Bruce commented about his professional background. “The Las Vegas show bands played 7 nights a week, the house bands 6 nights and I played in the relief bands every night. I played during Don Rickles’, Joan Rivers’, Chuck Berry’s shows as well as the “Follies Bergere” (Tropicana) and “Lido de Paris” (Stardust) production shows.
Sandy, “Las Vegas doesn’t have those elaborate production show anymore, but we do have big bands coming back! You’re big band, 19 pieces, will appear on Friday, November 9, at the Clark County Library, 1401 E. Flamingo Road.
Elisa commented, “We will be singing and swaying.”