January in the Valley sees an influx of entertainers from far and wide. One of the most popular acts just arrived for the annual tour. Husband and wife comedy and music team Bernie & Red are back with a whole brand new show, performing throughout the Valley for the month of January.
This will be their 14th season in South Texas and during that time they've built a faithful following for their distinctive comedy & for the entertaining musical content of their shows.
"Shows" is the operative word here. Every year Bernie & Red write and produce a new show, so if they are returning to a location, (for the 11th time in some cases) they will always present a new show.
Right now they have 8 or 9 different shows up and running, including this years NEW show, so check advertising to see which show is playing where.
Like a lot of Winter Texans, Bernie & Red have been married for quite a few years ....... In fact, they just celebrated their 46th Anniversary, having met as teenagers in the '60s in their home town of Liverpool, England. Yes, they were regulars at the Cavern and saw the Beatles live on countless occasions.
Since they were here in Texas last year, they have had a particularly busy year with trips to Toronto, the UK & Florida. In addition to those trips, they also managed to record on location, at two different concerts in Canada. These recordings are now available on their two latest CD releases.
These new releases are made up of the material which they feature on stage in their most recent shows.
Bernie & Red are well known for poking fun at the retirement/Winter Texan/RV lifestyle. Their signature tune, as it were, is "SKI Club", the story of a retired couple who are Spending the Kids Inheritance (S.K.I. get it?) & it is definitely the most requested number at their live shows. However, in 2011 they added a new number which is already matching "SKI Club" in popularity. Entitled "Walt Across Walmart", this piece tells the story of a couple who practice their ballroom dancing skills while shopping at Walmart. Set to the tune of "Waltz Across Texas" this piece hit a nerve with Winter Texans & "due to popular demand" is now available on CD.
Not surprisingly, this CD's is titled "Waltz Across Walmart" and along with the title song, it also includes several popular pieces from last year's show, the "Broadway/ Bluegrass Medley," "Feeling Too Good Today Blues" , "Do You Ever?" , "Stuttering Bum" & lots of the comedy pieces that are such an important part of Bernie & Red.
The second of the new releases is entitled "Makin' Whoopee". The title song features Bernie on ukulele. Also included is "There's a Hole in the Sewer Hose", "Give Me 40 Acres, & I'll Turn This Rig Around", "Delaware" & again, lots of comedy.
An integral part of this show is the very distinctive comedy, a result no doubt, of their British upbringing, combined with over 30 years of performing to North American audiences.
Although they have lived in Canada since the mid 70's, they return annually to the UK, a trip which is also an opportunity to "re-charge their batteries" as it were. "There is still a difference between British & American humor" says Bernie "&we like to feel that we are able to make the British humor which we feature in our show, a bit more accessible to Americans".
"The trips to the UK enable us to get back to our roots & the feisty verbal interchanges that are part & parcel of big city life in the UK. It gives us no end of comedy material for our show" explains Red.
Interestingly enough, it was the big city life that they wanted to get away from when they emigrated to Canada in the 1970's, & they succeeded, eventually settling on a small acreage & raising livestock & ultimately half an acre of organic blueberries. "I picked over 1,000 lbs of them this summer" says Bernie, "I'm looking forward to getting on the road & having a rest!"
Although it won't be much of a rest, with almost 40 shows between now & the end of March.
After 40 years in show biz, there are no signs of slowing down for Bernie & Red, in fact, it could be said that the over 60 age group, who make up the majority of their audience members, is a "growth market". "We seem to have found a recipe for a funny & entertaining show & the crowds continue to come back for more" says Red, " And as long as they return, we'll deliver the goods".
You can learn much more about Bernie & Red by visiting their website www.bernieandred.com
You can also find them on Facebook, just go to Facebook.com/bernieandred
Pre sold tickets are available for all their performances.
This year, as they do every year, Bernie & Red are presenting a number of different shows.
See listings in this & other local publications for details.