"Laughter is the breast medicine." If there's ever been a better pun tying in standup comedy with breast cancer research, I've not heard it.
The phrase is the calling card of the Pink Ribbon Comedy Tour, which will visit the Savannah Smiles Piano Bar Feb. 17. Comics Brendan T. Gleason, Nick Hoff, Kevin Richards, and Law Smith will perform - they're traveling the country through April to drum up some laughs and raise money and awareness for a very un-funny cause.
The show is a benefit for Susan G. Komen for the Cure, a nonprofit organization that has become one of the country's largest source of funds for research. Since its inception, it has raised more than $1.5 billion for research, education and health services.
The group was started by Nancy Goodman Brinker, whose sister - Susan G. Komen - lost her fight against breast cancer in 1980.
"We have come a long way in our fight," Brinker says on her organization's Web site. "When we started, the five-year survival rate was just 74 percent when breast cancer was diagnosed before it spread beyond the breast. Today, that survival rate is 98 percent.
"We are so close to creating a world without breast cancer. The science is there. Now is the time for us to see this fight through so that no one ever has to fear breast cancer again."
Brinker, the World Health Organization's Goodwill Ambassador for Cancer Control, served as Ambassador to Hungary, and Chief of Protocol for the United States, under President George W. Bush.
Last August, President Obama awarded Brinker the National Medal of Freedom, the nation's highest civilian honor.
Tickets for the Feb. 17 comedy event are $10.
For more information, go to www.komen.org.
Rolling with the changes
Speaking of puns, one of the all-time great album titles has to be You Can Tune a Piano, But You Can't Tuna Fish. That was a 1978 release from the Illinois rock band REO Speedwagon, the first of the group's big successes.
The band is coming to the Savannah Civic Center for an 8 p.m. Show March 13. Tickets are $45 and $55.
Unlike some of the other "heartland" rock bands from the ‘70s that are still out there touring (can you say "Styx"?), REO Speedwagon still has its original lead singer. That would be Kevin Cronin, whose distinctive voice is all over "Can't Fight This Feeling," "Roll With the Changes," "Keep on Loving You" and "Time For Me to Fly." The band's original keyboardist, Neal Doughty, is also in the current lineup.
You can get tickets at www.etix.com.
...New Orleans' Mutemath returns to our city Feb. 19 for a gig at the Trustees Theatre. Tickets are $20 public. $15 with a valid SCAD ID, and will be $25 day of show. And Dumpstaphunk, with Big Easy great Ivan Neville, will play at the Live Wire Music Hall Feb. 26 ......