Barry And Bette: A Tale Of Two Parties

NEW YORK – Barry Manilow‘s party was beautiful – but Bette Midler‘s and the National Lampoon’s was probably nuttier.

Barry’s a private guy. Doesn’t give interviews. Considers he’s a normal 32-year-old from Flatbush who happens to have sold 20 to 25 million records. Seldom yields to tributes to himself.

But Clive Davis and Arista R e c o r d s, a c c l a imi ng him as America’s No 1 singer, gave him a disco soiree at the St. Regis Roof where beauties like Lorna Luf t. Betsy Palmer. Phyllis Hyman and Dotty Williams fell on his neck, which is long and was encased in a red shirt.

By coincidence, bashful Barry was once accompianist for Bette Midler when both we r en’t famous, and helped with her early records.

“Bette was invited to Barry’s party tonight,” I was assured. But Bette and boy friend Peter Riegert, the actor, were involved in a party at the Village Gate for the opening of his film. “National Lampoon’s Animal House,” about wild, weird fraternity life.

Bette and her guy disappeared into a mass of over 2,000 people said to have included John Belushi, Donald Sutherland and Gilda Radner. It was a big night for producer Matty Simmons, Too big. He couldn’t find celebs in the mob.

The “fraternity house decorations” included inflatable girl dolls about four feet tall and garbage cans of iced beer. Music by Joey Dee and the Starliters.

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