I'm getting to be an irascible, suspicious old biddy. I think this whole flap was a publicity stunt by the president of Aladdin to get free publicity for his dive, and to cover up the marketing fiasco that meant the concert lost money.
Linda Ronstadt sings at a bankrupt (but not dead) casino, says some nice things about Michael Moore and Farenheit 9/11, and the people riot in protest, so she's booted by disgruntled hotel managment. (Original report from the Las Vegas Sun; , some follow up here
Only, an eyewitness says the audience was well behaved:
My wife & I were at the Linda Ronstadt performance in question, at the Aladdin in Las Vegas, and quite frankly, Aladdin President Bill Timmins' account of what happened is complete crap. There was mixed booing and cheering at Ronstadt's pro-Michael Moore comment, and that was about the extent of the "bedlam" that supposedly broke out. I saw no posters being torn down or cocktails being thrown in the air, and if people stomped out of the theatre unhappy, it was because 1) that was the last song Ronstadt performed; it was her encore; and 2) she mainly sang her standards repertoire, with the Nelson Riddle orchestrations, and a large part of the crowd wanted to hear more of her rock-'n'-roll stuff; she got the biggest round of applause for doing a lackadaisical run-through of her version of "Blue Bayou."
Frankly, my suspicion is that Timmins is way overdramatizing what happened, in order to justify giving Ronstadt the boot. It simply wasn't that big a deal.
I think Timmins made such a big deal out of it to raise visibility of the Aladdin property. Free publicity!! Patriotic!! Can't Miss!!--and to duck a bullet on the flawed marketing of the Ronstadt appearance, which may have lost money.
But the ideologues (on both sides) honked all over the story.
So what's up with the "liberal bias in the press?"--that's a world view that ceased to be correct a long time ago, but some conservatives cling to it like the tattered remnants of a security blanket. The left is just as bad about cabals and plots.
As for me, the stridency and howling on both sides is the opposite of clear thought. I'm staying away.
More backpedalling and excuses from Timmons and the Aladdin (which is in bankruptcy
Aladdin officials defend eviction of singer after political comments By MIKE WEATHERFORD REVIEW-JOURNAL
Singer evicted from Aladdin hotel after praising filmmaker Michael Moore
Aladdin officials said Monday the decision to evict singer Linda Ronstadt from their hotel Saturday was not a partisan political response but an attempt to "defuse the situation" with an angry crowd.
"It was a very ugly scene," Aladdin President Bill Timmins told The Associated Press. "She praised (filmmaker Michael Moore), and all of a sudden all bedlam broke loose."
"It did not come down to the statements she had said, per se," hotel spokeswoman Tyri Squyres said Monday of the 58-year-old singer, who dedicated her encore song "Desperado" to Moore and encouraged the audience to see his film "Fahrenheit 9/11."
"We needed her off the property," Squyres said of Timmins' decision to check the singer out of her room and escort her from the hotel. "She wanted to incite the audience, and she incited them to the point where they were very upset."
Squyres said Timmins is a British citizen, and the hotel's position would have been the same had Ronstadt taken the opposite political stand. "It's about using our venue for political commentary versus being an entertainer," she said. "She was hired to entertain, not to preach."
Ronstadt's eviction was "very polite, very professional," Squyres said.
The singer had no comment on the issue, her publicist said Monday.
Moore's Web site, https://michaelmoore.com, headed its home page Monday with Ronstadt's "Living in the USA" album cover and the phrase, "Thank you, Linda Ronstadt!"
An unspecified number of ticket refund requests had been forwarded to Ronstadt's management by the hotel, which took the financial risk for the show. The hotel also received more than 500 calls on Monday, both for and against the hotel's treatment of the singer, Squyres noted.
Some concertgoers took issue with the Aladdin's accounts of angry patrons tearing down posters and throwing drink cups.
"I was so stunned to read in the newspaper that anyone had a negative reaction," said KLAS-TV, Channel 8, news anchor Paula Francis. "Everyone who was leaving when I was leaving was just thrilled. They thought it was a good concert."
At the end of an hour's worth of singing, "she got a standing ovation, then she came out and did the (`Desperado') encore," Francis said. "There were loud boos and there was quite a bit of applause. But everyone calmed down right away and seemed to enjoy the rest of the encore."
Other concertgoers said the audience was unruly and hard-drinking from the beginning. Some expected a classic rock hits revue and were confused by the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra performance of George Gershwin's "Rhapsody in Blue" that opened the show.
During the concert, Ronstadt criticized the hotel's marketing, disputing signage that promised a greatest hits revue. (Print ads said, "Linda Ronstadt and the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra plus her band, performing her `greatest rock hits' and the great American standards.")
The singer has long been aligned with liberal politics, and was romantically involved with then-California Gov. Jerry Brown in the late 1970s. In an interview before the concert, Ronstadt noted she had been doing the Moore dedication at all her concert stops to mixed reaction.
The Bush administration is "awful, and so lying and so deceitful. And they're doing so much harm. They're making it more dangerous for us. They have to be stopped, I think. We have to throw the neocons out," she said in the interview.
Gaming regulators are expected to consider in August a licensing application from a new ownership group planning to buy the Aladdin and relaunch it as Planet Hollywood.