By Bobby Mitchell

You probably know you can win tickets all week to Neil Diamond’s show at the Palace, but did you know Neil was once so eager to ditch his “clean” image that he auditioned for the role of Lenny Bruce? You read that correctly. The filthy, controversial comedian Lenny Bruce! (By the way, Dustin Hoffman nabbed a Best Actor Academy Award nomination for his take on the comic in the 1974 film Lenny.) According to David Wild, author of “He Is…I Say: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Neil Diamond” says Neil went into an “existential funk” after the screen test and threw himself into writing the song I Am…I Said. David explains: “It would take months for him to finish the song, but in the end it would become a classic. One postscript: around 2000, Neil allowed me to see the failed screen test that set him off, and I was surprised to see that after all that he was really wonderful in the part. Still, things worked out pretty well for Neil.”

Neil Diamond comes to the Palace of Auburn Hills on March 20th.


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