5 Questions With Donny Osmond
Atlantic City Weekly
by Lori Hoffman
August 22, 2011
||Donny Osmond has set a whirlwind eleven-day North American concert tour to take place during the late August/early September hiatus of the Donny & Marie Show, a long-running headlining engagement at the Flamingo Hotel in Las Vegas. The show comes to the Borgata on Saturday, Aug. 27, 8pm. Tickets are $55, 65 and $75. In an interview with Atlantic City Weekly, Osmond explained that his show will be based on audience requests in a Q & A format, so it will be packed with audience favorites.
What will you show at Borgata be like?
It is a show I’ve never done before. I can’t tell you what it’s like. I won’t know until I actually do it. That is what’s so unique about this show. There is a Q&A section within the show and while my show has a structure, wherever the audience wants to take it, that’s where we’re going to go.
You mean, audience suggestions about what you are going to sing next?
Exactly. It’s going to be really interesting, because after 50 years of [being] in show business, I’ve got quite a few things up my sleeve. My band and I, we are going to have so many things rehearsed. Each member of the band has an iPad and my computer guy will plug [the request] into the computers, everyone gets the music and boom, we do it. You want to stretch and do things that are unique and different, and not just the music, but video as well. If someone asks us, for example, if I remember working with Lucille Ball back on the Donny & Marie Show in the 1970s, it will be on the screen immediately. I’m sure the audience will think it’s a plant. Then someone will ask me about doing a video with Weird Al Yankovic and boom, there it will be.
You just released an album with Marie. How different is it releasing an album in the era of the Internet?
Marketing is marketing and nowadays unless you have a Facebook and Twitter account, you’re not really involved in the music business, because that is the center of it all. I established Donny.com back in the days when I invented the Internet (He laughs.) I’m glad I was able to get that [domain name] because that is the epicenter of everything. When you release a record nowadays, yes you release the album, but people want to download certain particular songs and that’s fine. I’ve seen the industry change so much over the years that you just have to stay up with the times.
So tell about the new album. What type of music is it?
It's such a cliché to say it’s a little bit country and a little bit rock ’n’ roll, but that’s exactly what it is. Richie Sambora from Bon Jovi did some stuff with me, and Gavin DeGraw wrote a song called “I Have You to Thank” and he helped [co-produce that track]. That’s the rock side, and Marie and I are doing country stuff as well.
While you are doing your tour, Marie is out doing her tour. Is this a chance to express your ‘artistic differences’?
We didn’t expect the Donny & Marie Show to take off like it did in Vegas. We were looking at maybe a six-week contract and here we are going on our fourth year at the Flamingo. Both of us wanted to get back out there and do our solo stuff, and we only have a limited about of time — we go back to Vegas and start back up again in September. This was a great opportunity to spread our creative wings.