SINGER TONY BENNETT took some time off from performing with the BSO last weekend to renew old friendships and take in the sights.
After Friday night's performance, Bennett dropped by the Harvey House to chat with owner Lou Baumel about his days as a young crooner.
Seems the singer, then virtually unknown, worked here for Baumel 40 years ago when Baumel owned the old Club Charles at Charles and Preston.
Bennett needed a couple of days off from his two-week, $250-per stint to make a record. The rest, they say, is history.
"With all his great successes," Baumel told us, "he's still one of the most down-to-earth people."
Bennett, who's an artist, took the Monet Acoustiguide tour at the Baltimore Museum of Art and loved it.
ON THE WATERFRONT: Local artist Charlie Newton held court with wife Lou at the opening of his 30th annual art show the other night at the Waterfront Hotel in Fells Point.
The usual Fells Point cognoscenti showed up to check out Charlie's new works (mostly oils of Fells Point scenes and pencil drawings from his recent Florida sojourn) and munch on free food and drinks provided by owner Gene Raynor.
Among the artsy attending were: newlyweds Eddie and Marilyn DTC Pitts; John Herndon and Donna Belch; art historian Hilary Gans and Ruth Bogart; Debbie Phinney -- she's the commodore of the Fells Point Yacht Club -- and husband Ralph; Otts Bethel, a longstanding Fells Point fixture; "Railroad" Eddie Hewitt, Amtrak conductor; and Abe Lincoln look-alike Jeff Knapp.
AROUND THE TOWN: We hear the hot spot to be Saturday is the newly rechristened Nye/Gomez Gallery's opening featuring the works of artist-actor David Klein, the bizarre paintings of perennial Baltimore favorite Joan Erbe and the decorative art of longtime John Waters crony, Van Smith. The show runs through Dec. 7, by the way. . . . Don Cohen's Brass Image jazz trio is tearing them up Thursday nights at the Westview Lounge. You may have caught it last Friday morning on Rudy Miller and Horace Holmes' morning show on WMAR-TV (Channel 2).
EYE OPENERS: Local attorney Michael Hendler has just been elected to the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers Association, one of 20 professionals in the state to be accepted. . . . The Kidney Foundation of Maryland has announced that local real estate exec Otis Warren is this year's corporate honorary chairman for its sixth annual black-tie event Nov. 23 at the B&O Museum. Call 235-2526 if you'd like to attend. . . . And good luck to Pikesville preteens Jenny Edelstein and Shelly Brodsky, who are making their professional acting debuts in "Bernie's Bar Mitzvah" at the Fells Point Cabaret Theatre.
GUESS WHO POPPED up on WCBM-FM last Saturday? None other than veteran talk show host Alan Christian, who appeared on "21st Century Radio" with Bob and Zoh Hieronimus at the witching hour -- midnight -- to commemorate their 20th anniversary of sharing Halloween and ghost stories.
ARTY PARTY: In honor of the John Early Society, the Rev. Joseph Sellinger and the Board of Trustees of Loyola College hosted a reception and private viewing of the Monet exhibit at the BMA last weekend and what a party it was. Strolling violinists, magnificent food from Faidley's and the Impressionist masterpieces of Monet.
Among the revelers? Bud and Lois Hammerman, Bill and Carol Oliver, Mike and Jeanne Sullivan, Ted Herget, Ben and Myrna Cardin, Martin and Barbara Barry, Clarisse Mechanic, Alan Rifkin, Emma Favazza, Toni Favazza, Jim and Lois Gardner, Jennifer Vitale -- who was back for her fourth visit to see the exhibit -- and state Comptroller Louis Goldstein with wife Hazel.
TABLE HOPPING: Michael and Lisa Pachino are staging a second anniversary bash at their Ralphie's Diner in Timonium Wednesday night with a complimentary buffet and special drink prices. . . . Ed Bloom has opened the University Deli at Paca and Fayette, the site of the old Dispensary. It's cafeteria style -- all the food is made on the premises -- with a study lounge upstairs for students from the nearby University of Maryland law school.