Becca and I had a rare night out last night, and just like last time we spent the evening inside Worthington’s Memorial Auditorium and heard some live music from days gone by. This time, the tunes were a little more up alley – after catching a Hank Williams tribute last month (enjoyable, but I’m not a big country guy), it was time for a Revolution this time around.
Revolution was the name of the four-man band that performs as a tribute to the Beatles, and I must say soundwise they do a pretty solid job. The show opened with the boys preparing to make the first of their renowned appearances on the Ed Sulivan Show, with the band quickly launching into "She Loves You." More of the early classics followed: "I Wanna Hold You Hand," "A Hard Day’s Night," "Help," "I Feel Fine," and even a Ringo selecton, "Act Naturally," among a host of others in the 45-minute opening act.
While I’d still love to see Paul McCartney and even Ringo Starr play live someday (and never saw John Lennon or George Harrison before each died), I figured there was no reason to pass up this show as a longtime Beatles fan. When I was small, we didn’t have videos to put on and watch when we were bored; we either played with our array of toys or put on a record, and the music was usually Beatles music. I was probably able to sing along to most every word of every Beatles tune by the time I was, oh, 10. And I feel like my taste kind of matured along with the band: at first I liked more child-like songs like "Octupus’ Garden" and "Yellow Submarine" (both Ringo tunes); by the time I hit my teens I was all about the "White Album."
For a band that was a tribute act, I thought Revolution was pretty good. There were a few songs where the vocals didn’t quite match those of John or Paul, which is understandable considering the greatness of both. There was only one George Harrison tune played, and I think there had to have been some mic problems as his voice was barely audible for the first two-thirds of the song. The Ringo was solid throughout, and probably was my favorite of the four performers. The second act had some of the great Lennon-McCartney tunes of the later years, including selections from "Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band" (the band wore costumes matching those from that album’s cover), "Abbey Road" and "Let it Be" – not to mention a solo performance of "Imagine" (not a Beatles tune, but arguably Lennon’s best and most famous song without the Beatles).
After getting home, I looked online and learned that when the Beatles were on the Ed Sullivan Show for the first time, approximately 40 percent of the entire American population tuned in. Incredible – a phenomenon that will never be repeated, especially in an age with so many channels (with nothing on, too, as "Lennon" remarked during the show).
The spirit of the phenomenon was in Worthington last night, and I was happy to be there. And, next February, another tribute act arrives that will be a can’t miss. He of course won’t be the real deal, but for one night Elvis will be in the building. Rock ‘n’ roll at Memorial Auditorium – I love it!