If you still have the desire — at age 70 — to do what you have loved all your life, why not continue to do it?
That’s the bottom line for Jon “Bowzer” Bauman, who says he is not only physically fit, he is continually energized by “audiences who still enjoy” the type of music he and many pals perform.
“Plus, it’s lots of fun,” said Bauman in a recent telephone chat from a California vacation home, where he and wife, Mary, were hosting holiday gatherings (where the guest of honor was their 3-year-old granddaughter).
An American pop-culture icon, the Brooklyn, N.Y.,-born Bauman is perhaps best known as the character “Bowzer” — a greaser in a muscle shirt — that he created while in the doo-wop group, Sha Na Na, from 1969-1983, and as a host of the popular television game show “Hollywood Squares.”
Bauman brings his Bowzer’s Rock ’N’ Doo-Wop Party Volume XVII to Mohegan Sun “to perform some of the best hits from the ’50s and ’60s” on Sunday, Jan. 14. Highlighting the concert will be members of the Original Comets.
Mohegan Sun Arena, 1 Mohegan Sun Blvd., Uncasville. Sunday, Jan. 14, 3 p.m. $35, $25. Ticketmaster.com, 800-745-3000, mohegansun.com
“We love Mohegan Sun; this will be our 17th year in a row that we’ll be there. We love the venue, the area and the audiences,” said Bauman, who, unlike his Bowzer character, was quite the academic, studying piano as a youth at Juilliard School and graduating from Columbia University (as did both his son, Eli, and daughter Nora), both in Manhattan.
Bauman said he will sing and play the piano with Bowzer & The Stingrays, as well as act as host.
“I love live performances ... and the instant feedback” that comes from being on stage, he said. “It’s a feeling that’s hard to describe when you look out (from the stage) and see 7,250 people obviously having fun.” There are also many opportunities to hook up and spend time with old friends and fellow musicians, “creating moments that you will remember for the rest of your life,” he added.
In addition to his growing family, Bauman has much to keep him busy when he’s not touring. His production company, for example, produced “The Golden Age of Rock ’n’ Roll,” a 10-hour series for the A&E Network.
A longtime supporter of the Democratic party and advocate for the rights of senior citizens and anti-poverty programs, Bauman said although he’s interested in politics, he’s “too long in the tooth” to run for office.
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