With over 70 million records sold, BJ Thomas’ vocal versatility is as apparent today as it was when he recorded his first hit in 1967, “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry”.
Since the mid-1960s, BJ Thomas has become one of the most recognized and respected voices of the American musical landscape. He has impacted many areas of popular music with 15 Top 40 pop hits, 10 Top 40 country hits, 5 Grammys, 2 Dove awards and 15 Gold and Platinum Records. He is the only artist to successfully move to the top of three music genres not as a crossover and also have crossover success.
“As a singer,” BJ states, “I have the chance to lift the spirits of the audience and make them feel good, at least for the evening.”
It’s an attitude people have noticed. Fans frequently approach BJ to thank him for the impact of his songs ranging from the mega hit “Raindrops Keep Fallin’ On My Head” to country smashes like “New Looks From An Old Lover.” BJ’s music is testimony to the fact he is a survivor. He has overcome personal adversity and addiction as well as weathered professional storms to emerge musically stronger than ever.
The Second City opened its doors on a snowy Chicago night in December of 1959. No one could have guessed that this small cabaret theatre would become the most influential and prolific comedy theatre in the world.
With its roots in the improvisational games of Viola Spolin, The Second City developed an entirely unique way of creating and performing comedy. Founded by Spolin’s son, Paul Sills, along with Howard Alk and Bernie Sahlins, The Second City was experimental and unconventional in its approach to both theatre and comedy. At a time when mother-in-law jokes were more the fashion, The Second City railed against the conformist culture with scenes that spoke to a younger generation.
The Broadway success of Mike Nichols and Elaine May – members of The Second City’s predecessor, The Compass Players – put attention on the fledgling company. Soon, alumni of The Second City – such as Alan Arkin, Barbara Harris, Robert Klein, David Steinberg and Fred Willard – began to cement the theatre’s reputation for developing the finest comedic voices of each and every generation. With the debut of NBC’s Saturday Night Live, populated by Second City Alums John Belushi, Dan Aykroyd and Gilda Radner, the theatre became internationally known for its ever increasing roster of comedy superstars.