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August 1, 2014

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The Stirling Club remains closed, but the dance continues; Santana channels Lennon; Guns N’ Roses rocks 3D

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JPM Studio

The Stirling Club

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The VegasVille landscape is strewn with notes.

And so we rake:

• The Mansion at Turnberry Place, which is the home of the late-great Stirling Club, remains listed at $18 million on Sotheby’s website. The price has not moved for seven months, at least. Periodically, there is percolation from the scene that the Stirling Club is close to being sold or a formal offer has been made to snap up the swanky property just across from LVH on Paradise Road.

But the man who holds the listing, Gene Northup of Synergy Sotheby’s International Realty, says only that he has received several Letters of Intent from interested parties, but no formal offer has been made on the property, which went up for sale in the spring of 2012.

There is one school of thought that the $18 million price is too high, maybe by $6 million. There is another school of thought (a fancier school, if you will, where the children of Turnberry Place residents would be taught) that $18 million is a reasonable price because the original construction cost of the Aristocratic buildings and the surrounding pool, spa, tennis courts and parking spaces on the 30-acre parcel was between $35 million to $50 million. But there is no question that the Stirling Club is tired and would need a healthy investment just to refresh the premises. The place is practically atrophying since closing in May.

There have been a few threads of optimism. One particularly interested party is said to be a highly reputable international business operation based in Israel, which would retain an operator who is a well-known food and beverage operator with ties to Las Vegas. But again, amid meetings here and crisscrossing discussions over the phone, no offer on the Stirling Club is currently being reviewed, and the club sits dark.

At the end of the dance, that is not a good thing.

Dale Evers Sculpture Unveiled for Santana, HOB

Artist Dale Evers' 13-foot guitar sculpture for Carlos Santana and House of Blues is unveiled at HOB in Mandalay Bay on Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2013. Santana, Evers (in black) and Paul Reed Smith (in striped shirt) of PRS Guitars attended the unveiling. Launch slideshow »

• Last week in the unveiling of the statue inspired by his music, Carlos Santana stepped to the mic at House of Blues in Mandalay Bay and started, “I am he as you are he … how does that go?”

He was searching his syntax for the first verse of “I Am the Walrus.”

“Lemme see … too much LSD,” the guitar great but so-so lyricist laughed. Then he recited, correctly, “I am he as you are me as you are he, and we are all together. Sorry there, John.” He meant Lennon, who wrote that song's swirling lyrics.

The 13-foot-tall sculpture of a guitar adorned with a pair of wings is aptly titled “Wings of a Legend.” The piece was created by artist Dale Evers and is a steel, glass and bronze replica of a PRS Santana Signature guitar. The artist and the guitar company’s founder, Paul Reed Smith, also were on hand to pay tribute to Santana, who refers to his brothers and sisters as “weapons of mass compassion.”

The guy rocks, and if you want to see him actually do that, his current set of performances runs through Feb. 2.

'Rock of Ages' Grand Opening at Venetian

The Launch slideshow »

• In “Rock of Ages,” Kevin Hegmann plays the character Franz, the one who reminds somewhat whimsically of Pee-Wee Herman. In that role, Hegmann sings an aggressively aerobic version of the Pat Benatar classic “Hit Me With Your Best Shot.” Hegmann tips off why he is proud to sing this song with his note in the show program: “Kevin is thrilled to be singing his hometown girl’s hit!”

What’s it mean? Hegmann and Benatar are from Lindenhurst, N.Y. But Benatar reportedly has never seen the show, apparently because she believes the campy rendition of the song makes fun of her.

Not so. But it might make fun of Richard Simmons …

• David Perrico is back onstage at the Lounge at the Palms at 11 p.m. Saturday. The music director and trumpet player of the great live “show bands” in the city, Perrico was profiled on PBS on Friday. Joining Perrico is lead vocalist Savannah Smith of “Vegas! The Show,” who has stepped in to relieve Naomi Mauro, who this month had a baby boy, Evan Salvatore Mauro. Guest vocalists scheduled to appear are Lorena Peril of “Fantasy” and Las Vegas jazz singer Laura Shaffer. Admission is but a pittance, $5 at the door.

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The "CeeLo and Friends" Christmas show and Keep Memory Alive fundraiser featuring CeeLo Green (pictured here), Rod Stewart, the Muppets and "The Voice" contestants at Peepshow Theater in Planet Hollywood on Wednesday, Oct. 10, 2012.

• Caesars Entertainment has something big planned for Feb. 21. That date is locked in for some wildly entertaining promotional event (“wildly” being my own hopeful description). The best guess is this event is to shine a light on the sequins, feathers and rhinestones of CeeLo Green’s “Loberace,” which opens at the “Peepshow” theater Feb. 27.

Guns N' Roses at the Joint on Nov. 2, 2012

Guns N' Roses' Launch slideshow »

• Guns N’ Roses is getting the most bang (for its buck) from its 12-night “Appetite for Democracy” series at the Joint in the Hard Rock Hotel last year. The band has announced on its Facebook page that it is releasing a full-length, 3D concert film and accompanying DVD of the performances due to hit a desirous public by the end of this year. If you’re wondering who holds the record for the highest-grossing concert film ever, that distinction belongs to Justin Bieber. His 2011 “Never Say Never” release grossed nearly $99 million and will never be topped. Or maybe I should not say that …

• Nevada Ballet Theater honors Mitzi Gaynor as its Woman of the Year on Saturday during its annual gala at the Bellagio. Gaynor is a show-business legend as a an actress, singer and dancer. But Beatles fans recognize her mostly for her appearance on their second appearance on “The Ed Sullivan Show,” which aired from Miami on Feb. 16, 1964. She appeared in a 9-minute segment between the band’s two sets, singing “Too Darn Hot” and sampling from her nightclub act. Another footnote: Seated in the audience for that show, together, were boxing greats Joe Louis and Sonny Liston.

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Trina Johnson-Finn performs at the the opening of "Vegas! The Show" at Saxe Theater at Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood.

• Trina Johnson-Finn, late of “Vegas! The Show” who split from that production to perform a touring Whitney Houston tribute show, was the featured entertainment during a presidential inaugural after-party hosted by BET founder Bob Johnson at Franco Nuschese’s Café Milano. Johnson-Finn closed the party with an hour of cover tunes and originals; this was not a tribute performance.

The gig was a long, long way from the harrowing period in 2009 when Johnson-Finn was locked up in a jail in Suriname after a concert promoter billed her Toni Braxton tribute show as the real thing. Johnson-Finn had never before performed in the tiny country just north of Brazil and was unaware 1,500 fans had turned up to see the real Toni Braxton. In the aftermath of the show, in which Johnson-Finn was booed offstage, law enforcement officials tried to track down the promoter and locked up the singer for 104 days. Three years later, she was part of the presidential inauguration celebration. Only in America, right?

Follow John Katsilometes on Twitter at Twitter.com/JohnnyKats. Also, follow “Kats With the Dish” at Twitter.com/KatsWiththeDish.

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