KMB Review: South Carolina


Midler nails songs, S.C. institutions

The State
Staff Writer

Photo: BaltoBoy Steve

If Bette Midler retires (gasp) from singing, she could be a standup comedian. If The Divine Ms. M. doesn’t want to tell jokes, she could always be a South Carolina historian.

This fabulous and incandescent (Midler’s words) thing does her research.

Midler brought her part theater, part concert “Kiss My Brass” show to the Colonial Center Thursday night. Amid the dancing and singing, she had some knee-slapping jokes about the Palmetto State.

The comedic bits throughout the show were far more entertaining than the singing.

She said Lou Holtz, the USC football coach, couldn’t make the show because he was planning a national championship.

According to Midler, Rush Limbaugh, the conservative radio host who admits to being an OxyContin addict, is an oxymoron (get it?).

Midler waved hello to the cruisers of Senate Street, Forest Acres and Southern Baptists.

She said the state had “the largest collection of minibottles in the world.” That was after she said her show had “more twists and turns than Andre Bauer on the highway.”

The crowd laughed and applauded the woman who entered blowing kisses while riding a carousel pony anchored from the stage ceiling. (The motorized wheelchair after intermission was better.)

Midler’s voice, which floated from between the curtains of the Coney Island-themed set and over the crowd of more than 6,500, had strength.

Songs like “Skylark,” “When a Man Loves a Woman,” “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy” and Rosemary Clooney’s “Hey There” sounded flawless.

She wore an outfit that can only be described as nautical because of the sailor-blue pants. And her curly-fry tight blond curls were perfect.

It took only one song for her to tell how beautiful she was and that she wasn’t going Cher’s route (retiring). Don’t gasp, be happy.

“God, I gotta tell you, even I don’t know how I do it,” she said. “I’m not retiring and you can’t make me.”

Midler poked fun at her ill-fated CBS sitcom attempt, “Bette,” with a videotaped skit patterned after the TV show “Judge Judy.” It starred Midler, Judge Judy, the CBS eye and Gary Coleman as bailiff.


Let’s hope it’s not another four years before she decides to tour again, because this show was quite entertaining.

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