Frankie Moreno and the liquid power of Crown Royal
Sun, Dec 16, 2012 (9:11 p.m.)
Photo: John Knopf
It’s hard to imagine something new could be said about Frankie Moreno, headliner at the Stratosphere. Ask the writers in town. I would have thought seeing the show three times was perhaps excessive. Child’s play. John Katsilometes' schedule includes a few shows a month, and he bon voyaged across Europe with the Moreno brothers. Jack Houston happily admits he’s been to see Moreno six times. Not to mention that every time you turn around it’s Frankie striking a pose on the cover of a local magazine.
And why? What is so addictive about Frankie? Is it that he’s a heartthrob, like a modern-day Elvis? Is it that the likes of Simon Cowell and Joshua Bell have sung his praise? After spending time behind the scenes researching new late night Vegas Video Network show After Hours with Frankie Moreno, I discovered that, like super-premium gas powering a fancy SUV, the liquid fueling the Frankie Moreno show is Crown Royal.
In the trailer before the show, Joey Fatone, best known from boy band ‘N Sync, says with a smile, “He seemed to be nice at first, but then started shoving Crown Royal down my throat.” During the performance, Crown makes several key cameo appearances. Moments after curtain up, Frankie and his crew throw back a team shot followed by, “This is going to be a good show!” Several songs later, a jolly man named Dino comes out with a half-empty bottle of Crown. Frankie hugs him, takes the bottle and offers communion, asking the audience to bring their empty glasses to stage so he can fill them. Frankie then gives the empty bottle to one of his disciples. Singer/songwriter Bob Caloca, who was part of the only band to ever open for Elvis Presley, told me after the show, “To be able to reach out and grab the audience at that level. I think that’s a beautiful moment.”
Following the show, I meet the recipient of that empty bottle of Crown. Beaming, she recounts how she waited in line to get it autographed and says it will take a special place on her fireplace mantle. That, my friends, is the power of Crown Royal and Frankie Moreno.