Photo: Barry Shermer (Bette with Patti Labelle)
For Divine Miss M, once is not enough
The Atlanta Journal and Constitution; 10/28/2004;
RICHARD L. ELDREDGE, Staff
Sure, Buzz Central already chatted up Bette Midler once this year, prior to the start of her critically acclaimed “Kiss My Brass” tour. A fresh leg of the wacky stage act rolls into the Gwinnett Arena tonight at 8:30. And when you’re asking $127.50 per ticket for the best seats in the house, you’ll even talk to the likes of us twice in the calendar year. Here are the highlights from our recent phone conversation with the Divine Miss M.
Buzz: So if I go to your show in Gwinnett, will I have an opportunity to purchase an obscenely overpriced T-shirt that reads “Kiss My Brass — Again?”
Bette: (laughing) I wish you could! But no. Someone shoulda suggested that, though.
Buzz: Why the new leg of the tour?
Bette: We tightened things up a lot and it’s evolved a lot. It’s just something that happens naturally whenever you take a show like this out on the road. Besides, it still felt too new and too elaborate to stick it in mothballs already.
Buzz: How do you continue to find the energy to maintain a tour schedule when so many of your peers like Barry Manilow [her former musical director] are retiring from touring?
Bette: It’s a comfortable show for me to do. If I sleep enough, I really can sail through the shows. Barry is more of a songwriter who makes records. It may not be as much fun for him. Besides, I don’t entertain much when I’m home. This is like hosting a fabulous party every night.
Buzz: And you can’t exactly beat the hostess gifts people bring.
Bette: That’s right! I’m not registered anywhere. Just bring money.
Buzz: Your remake of “The Stepford Wives” will be released on DVD Nov. 9. In it, you looked like you had a lot of fun.
Bette: We all had a lot of fun. I’ve gotten a marvelous response. It reminds me of when Diane [Keaton] and Goldie [Hawn] and I made “The First Wives Club.” Afterward, everyone said, ‘Oh, finally women of a certain age are coming back to the big screen!’ Guess what? It didn’t happen. Ultimately, the movie business is so fractured, it doesn’t work that way.
Buzz: I’ve heard baby boomers and gay men complaining that since both you and Cher are rolling through Gwinnett this fall, they won’t have any money left for the holidays.
Bette: (cackling) Yeah, but we will!