"I'm killing myself for this tour because there's a painting I want!"Barbra Streisand explains the impetus behind this latest concert tour.
Singers typically have a short professional life. Beverly Sills sang her last opera at 51, while Callas was only 42. When Judy Garland died at 47, she had already been in vocal decline for several years. And let's not even talk about Liza. So my expectations were tempered walking into "Barbra: The Music ... The Mem'ries ... The Magic." After all, Streisand is 74and yet, what you get is roughly 85-90 percent of prime Babs.
Yes, there is a discernible roughness to anything above a B. But rather than avoid these notes, she faces the challenge head-on and quite often, the risk pays off. The set list includes a number of songs she's never sung publicly before. A highlight is the sequence from Funny Lady. Her tackling of the breakdown scene of "How Lucky Can You Get" was staggering. OK, the gratuitous "Fan-fucking-tastic" is questionable, but it got a cheeras expletives often do. Barbra also shares the stage for duets with a number of people who appear on her upcoming Encores CD. In LA, she had Seth MacFarlane, Jamie Foxx and Babyface ( who sang with her on her 2014 CD, Partners ). I'm told various special guests will turn up in most cities.
The concert is longer than most of her outings, and she seems to be genuinely relaxed and enjoying herselfalthough that might be because I went to an exclusive pre-tour event that was solely for "Family & Friends." I was grateful to be counted amongst that elite group, which included people like Jane Fonda, Kristin Chenoweth, Darren Criss, Marissa Jaret Winokur, Rob Lowe, Pierce Brosnan, David Duchovny, Kathy Griffin, Sheryl Lee Ralph, Melissa McCarthy, Jane Lynch and Jenifer Lewis. Since this was a dress rehearsal, there were some mishaps. At one point, Streisand noticed something on the ground. "What's that? It's beads from my dress!" She scurried around, picking up beads and clutching them in her handundoubtedly ready to hand them off to her seamstress Anna ( who was in the audience, but surely worked through the night ). And when she went to exit, the doors at the rear of the stage didn't open. She shrugged her shoulders, laughed and walked back out for her encore ( "Happy Days Are Here Again," complete with words on the screenit was like "Sing Along with Streisand" ).
I must admit, I enjoy the summer Olympics primarily because we get to see really hot guys in almost no clothing. Even the parade of nations wasn't exempt from that. The Tongan flag bearer ( sporting a bare torso ) stole the hearts of women and gay men everywhere. Pita Nikolas Taufatofua, a 6'3", 32-year-old athlete, will compete in taekwondo. He was slathered with copious amounts of coconut oil. "In Tonga, it's traditional. In any sort of event we use coconut oil," said Taufatofua. Interestingly enough, he was actually born in Australia. Although he lives in Brisbane, he wanted to compete for the country of his fatherwhere, methinks, he'd have far less competition.
Speaking of the Olympics, this week numerous gay men on social media took aim at Gus Kenworthya name most people have never heard before. He's an openly gay Olympic skier, and he's really hot. And that's why he has a followingif he were losing his hair and had a hump, he'd have no fan base ( medal or not ). Gus posted a photo with beau Matt Wilkas and Caitlyn Jenner at an undisclosed party in London. That party was to celebrate the birthday of Prince Azim, the son of the sultan of Brunei, a monarch with an anti-gay bent.
The "colorful" prince enjoys having celebrities at his fetesfolks like Janet Jackson, Diana Ross, Mariah Carey, Sophia Loren, Michael Jackson and others have attended in the past ( and have been, presumably, well-compensated ). But it does beg the questionhow anti-gay is anyone with that kinda guest list? Once Gus was informed that this could be a touchy subject with his fans, he deleted the postbut not before it wormed its way through the web. Since then, he's been raked over the coals about how he's let so many people down. When you can find Brunei on a map or tell me any stats about Kenworthy other than the number of abs he has, then you can tell me how let down you are.
Sources say E! is putting I Am Cait out of its miseryand not a moment too soon. I hear the brass only tolerated it because they're in bed with the other Kardashians. Insiders claim there is no fan base for Bruce/Caitlyn. The gays don't care. The women don't care. And straight men don't watch E! What was the final straw? When an African network pulled the show after getting a complaint from a viewer in Nigeria. Once you've lost the Nigerians...
Some celebrated men were having a devil of a time keeping their clothes on. First, we had Orlando Bloom paddle boarding with paramour Katy Perry in Sardinia. First, let me thank Mr. Bloomwhether by design or simply happenstancefor at least providing us with a semi-fluffed penis. It's the little things, you understand. Really it's his entire body ( and that ass ) which made it for meyou can see for yourself on BillyMasters.com .
Not to be outdone, Justin Bieber risked overexposure to the sun ( to say nothing of the Zika virus ) by hiking in flagrante. While I find the Beebs to be much ado about nothing, it's my job is to tell you where you can see him in the buffwhich I will admit his body is. And that place would be our website.
When we have a positive story about Orlando, it's definitely time to end yet another column. Before we wrap up, I want to mourn the passing of Youree Dell Cleomili Harris. You probably knew her best as Miss Cleo, professional psychic. In a sad twist of fate, she had colon cancer that apparently spread to her other organs. If only she discovered it sooner. And you can discover all that and more on www.BillyMasters.coma site that you can find without GPS! If you've got a question, send it along to me at Billy@BillyMasters.com, and I promise to get back to you before Brunei starts importing coconut oil! Until next time, remember, one man's filth is another man's bible.