Thursday, August 11, 2011

More Of Your Comments on This Year's Happy Together Again Tour

We're coming into the home stretch of this year's Happy Together Again Tour ... 

Only a few dates left (including a concert tonight at the Chumash Casino in Santa Ynez, California!)

Last week, we shared our first negative comment from The Happy Together Again Tour.  Honestly, I was quite surprised ... the chance to see these five superstar acts from the '60's seems like a whole lotta bang for your buck ... and the negativity of that one post seems to have upset some of our readers, too.  But, as we explained at the time, if we don't show ALL sides in our column, then we haven't fairly represented things to the thousands of oldies fans out there who depend on us for the real scoop.  (Besides ... some of these comments actually help keep some of these artists on their toes!!!  lol)

By the same token, it's REALLY reassuring to see somebody like Howard Kaylan of The Turtles agreeing with my position on this ... here's what he sent in after he read our most recent Happy Together Again Tour posting:  (kk)

Thanks for posting the tour updates.
I liked what you said about the negative comments turning into positive changes ...
and perhaps the other bands will take it to heart. 
I'm really enjoying this year's tour.
The guys are great and the production company has their stuff very together.
See you at the Paramount on the 26th. Thanks!
Howard Kaylan

If you live for negative reviews, just pop on over to the Pollstar site ... jeez, these guys will let ANYBODY post ANYTHING ... doesn't seem to be any sort of monitoring going on here.  (We found one guy even asking for his money back!)  You'll find some of the best ... and worst ... posted below along with comments from several of our readers who were able to catch the show this year ... many of whom took FH Reader Bob Kacerow to task for his less-than-flattering review!  (Let's face it, you can't please everyone ... but a show like this ... with a hit assault of over FIFTY bonafide Top 40 Hits ... is tough to beat ... at ANY price!  We're hoping to meet up with the guys when they come back through our area on the 26th of this month for a show at The Paramount Theatre in Aurora, IL.)

Meanwhile, here's more of the good, the bad and the ugly from the concert seats ... 

The Turtles (Flo and Eddie at least) were highly entertaining as usual and also (as usual) had a few surprises. They are excellent entertainers and the standouts and headliners of the Happy Together Tour. They always make you laugh but come up with the musical goods when it counts and this night was no exception. Mark Lindsay was also very good and had a lot of energy, I could've spent a longer time that evening with only those two acts for my money and walked away happy.   
Spinworx (Westbury)
The Turtles have always been my favorite rock singers. Now they're out on the road with this Happy Together Tour and trying to encapsulate their entire 45 year career into a 30 minute show. Pretty hard to do. But they do it.        
Metal Guru

Still thinking about the show and how we were screwed out of 75 bucks each for theses clowns. You could not give me front row for a show with them ever again.  
If I could get my money back some how, I would ask.           

This is the same show Rob Grill was at last year, but these guys need to hang it up.  All they do is goof around and sing about 30 seconds of each song ... jump around the stage and don't do a very good concert, period.  Just plain pitiful, so save your money if it's just them on the bill.  

I've seen the Bucks over 100 times since the mid-80's, a couple times in the 60's and introduced them on stage 5-6 times in the past decade. Believe me, they are simply a terrific band ... the best from that era for my money. Carl & Nick and fellow band members rock and their fun is infectious. I don't care if you're 4 or 94 - you can't go to a Buck's show and be disappointed. On top of that, they're classy guys. I'm about the same age and hope they continue to rock until I drop!        
I just saw the Happy Together Tour again this year - It was like watching American Bandstand, only not on a "snowy" T.V. ! I remembered all the songs and almost all of the words. The Grass Roots are my all time favorite band. I couldn't sit down, had to bust a move, (you know dance like old people). They still rock my world! Go see the "Happy Together Tour" it's a blast back!!! 
J Hyphen
The current Grass Roots lineup, with the exception of Mark Dawson, have been playing together longer then any Grass Roots lineup in the past. Rob Grill put together a lineup out there for us that does justice to the Grass Roots songs.  Don't like the current Grass Roots? Don't go see them. I'm sure someone that appreciates this great music will fill your seat!       

There is NOBODY like Mark Lindsay. The guy is a national treasure. He is gorgeous, he's got hotter moves than he did thirty years ago (and they were pretty darnn hot then!) and he can sing the birds out of the trees. Add a killer smile and a fabulous, talk bod to all that . . . see this guy -- you'll never be the same again!       
January 24

The Buckinghams were the opening act for the other four acts. While I didn't expect too much, I expected a little more than was presented, a somewhat tired set with jokes that were stiff and scripted. Neither of the two members are the original singer and you could tell the difference from the records. The Happy Together Tour backup band didn't seem too enthused during their set either athough they pumped it up and got into as some of the bigger acts came on board.  

Thank you for posting my review of the Happy Together Tour.  I would like to remark about Bob Kacerow post.  The old jokes did get a little thin, but I enjoy artists that interact with the audience.  Without the talk, they could have done maybe one more song. The jacket thing was corny, but it’s called entertainment, part of the show.  I have seen The Eagles twice ... they stand there and sing ... and that’s pretty much it ... but it is still a great show. 
Life's short ... enjoy all of it.  Don’t let the little things bother you,or it will ruin a good time.
Joe Fuller

Great reading, as always, Kent.
I have been reading the comments for several weeks now about the Happy Together Tour.
I caught it at the Keswick Theater in Glenside, PA (right outside of Philadelphia), in July. Saw it last summer as well. I thought that this year, the "Grass Roots" were FAR superior to last year's group (even though I agree with many of your readers that they should really be billed as a tribute band since there are no originals). I saw them two days after Rob Grill's passing and they did say a few words about it. Last year, when they were in the Philly area, Rob Grill was supposed to be with them, but apparently had become ill, and was a no-show. The guy they got to replace him was AWFUL ... but THIS year, whoever replaced him, did a great job. Wish they were more diligent about letting you know who's who in these groups.
The back-up band for all of the groups was amazing!!! Nice re-creation of the sounds we grew up with.
Not to be a "Debbie-Downer", but I was majorly disappointed by The Association. The tight harmonies that we know and love just WERE NOT there. At times, it was just painful to listen. Jim Yester kept it together ... wish I could say the same for the other guys. Maybe just an off night for them, but ...
Of course, the Bucks were great ... basically a re-hash of last summer, but entertaining!
Mark Lindsay was fantastic! The guy brings some serious energy to his performance and he sounds great too! And Howard and Mark are always worth the price of admission!
Happy Together, indeed! 
Kent ...
On the road with Mark Lindsay.  Check out his pictures from the "Happy Together Tour".
Frank B.
Hello Kent,
This is in response to the "Happy Together Tour Again" article with regards to the review that Bob Kacerow wrote. I'm a long time reader of the blog and I've hit the roof with this last review. I'm not taking sides here, but I am expressing how I feel about the given situations listed.
Let me start out by saying that I have not seen the tour for myself. I have however, seen these acts many times and feel qualified enough to respond.
First of all, regarding The Buckinghams: Old age jokes are a part of every performers act. That's just how it works.
Second, how is Carl trying on the "60s jacket" a waste of time? It's part of the show! Anybody who has seen The Buckinghams in concert, knows that the jacket is a part of the show and a part that the audience looks forward to seeing. Is it not cool to see something vintage or are you just an old buzzard who is jealous that you don't have a jacket like that? Maybe you're jealous because your wife / girlfriend still has a crush on these guys ...
And, if you are going to be critical about The Buckinghams telling, "old age jokes", why aren't you being equally critical to The Association, Mark Lindsay, The Turtles, and The Grass Roots? If they are all equally guilty, then why are you only slamming one group? "Old age jokes", are not a mock to the audience. If you are so sensitive about your age of 57, then you should stay home, in your rocking chair and wait to cross over.
As far as the Grass Roots are concerned ... They will always be The Grass Roots. It can't be a sham to call them by their name if that's who they are! Regardless if Rob Grill is with them or not, it's who they are!!! Calling them, "Grass Roots Tribute Band", would be a sham, as they are The Grass Roots. Nobody said, ORIGINAL Grass Roots. They have had many line-up changes over the years and it would be impossible to reunite everybody from 1966. Even if that were to happen, I'm sure you still wouldn't be satisfied.
Why not include The Grass Roots? True fans would come to the concert and enjoy the show without griping about why The Grass Roots are still on the bill when Rob Grill isn't coming. True fans come to listen to the music and remember the memories as they sing along to the songs of the sixties.
Now, I have to sit back with this next one and shake my head in disbelief. I cannot get over the fact that Bob K wrote this following quote: "Was that just to infuse some cash for Rob's on-going medical expenses?" How could any decent person even think that? Oh my God! That is disgusting and I'm appalled to know and to see that someone had said this! This is why I decided to comment here. I'm sick and tired of these so called, "fans" berating every act they see. (These "fans" should be happy that these performers still want to get out on the road and perform.) This especially has struck a nerve with me. I've had the opportunity to see Rob Grill three times and I'm grateful that I was able to. Rob was a great performer and always very kind and generous to his fans. After reading that he had passed away, I felt an empty spot in my soul, knowing I would never hear him sing live again. I had been aware of his very unfortunate health problems, but that didn't make it any easier. With or without Rob, I want to continue to hear the music of The Grass Roots. Mark Dawson was hand picked by Rob and I personally think he is fantastic. He sounds a lot like Rob did back in the sixties. I think Dawson is doing a great job keeping the spirit of Rob Grill alive!
Look, Bob: You went to the Happy Together Tour. You said it was great and that it surpassed last year's tour. If you're saying these things about the 2011 tour, I can only imagine what you were saying about 2010.
If it was "great", (and I'm sure the concert was beyond fantastic) than it sounds like you are just a disgruntled person who needs to have his 15 minutes of fame complaining about musicians that you are more than likely jealous of.
It is disturbing that you view The Grass Roots billing on this tour the way that you do, and I think many people will agree with me, that you were and are completely out of line.
Thanks for understanding,
My Regards,
Katarzyna B.

I saw the Happy Together Again Tour concert just about a week ago. I am kind of glad I waited to send in my review cause I got the chance to see some other people's take on it. I loved it.
I could not have had more fun unless they had taken me with them.
It was 108 degrees the day of the concert and I was so impressed that these older dudes could get up on stage and entertain like they did. The Buckinghams played first and I have to tell you ... I am in love with Nick Fortuna!  I think Bob Kacerow's comments about Nick sounded a little like jealousy to me. What does the length of his hair have to do with his music???? Hey Bob ... he's in a band!!! Maybe Bob ... at 57 ... doesn't have any hair???? As far as the bands making to many jokes about old age, senior citizens, etc., we here in Missouri all felt like we were in on the joke not the brunt of it. Age crisis Bob?????
Okay ... enough about Bob ...
Even though they do not have any of the original members, The Grass Roots got the crowd so into their music. The Association was a man down and some of their harmonies were off, but all of these groups did more than just sing and play. They told stories and shared things about themselves and really connected with the audience.
Mark Lindsay was a hoot. He still has an incredible high kick with those long skinny legs. He got down once and we didn't think he was going to get back up. A couple of the band members were ready to help if need be but Mark managed to recover by himself.
The Turtles closed the show and Flo was amped. Eddie kept trying to start a song and Flo kept talking and running around acting crazy. Finally Eddie said "Don't whip it out, man ... we are at a fair!"
The back-up band is really good. I felt for them because they were on stage in the horrible heat for the entire concert but their energy level never wavered. I am envious of Joe Fuller's experience because we did not have a back stage opportunity. Flo from the Turtles stayed on stage and shook some people's hands and signed autographs but he was the only one. I was hoping that all of the performers would come back on stage at the end of the show ... but that didn't take away from a terrific concert. I would love to get the chance to see this again.

Just a few dates left:

Thursday, August 11th - The Chumash Casino in Santa Ynez, CA
Wednesday, August 24th - The Kentucky State Fair in Louisville, KY
Thursday, August 25th - The Effingham Performance Center in Effingham, IL
Friday, August 26th - The Paramount Theatre in Aurora, IL  (See you guys at this show!)
Saturday, August 27th - The Corn Palace in Mitchell, SD
Sunday, August 28th - The Meadows Ballroom at the Prairie Meadows Casino in Altoona, IA
Monday, August 29th - The Minnesota State Fair in Saint Paul, MN

And, in a somewhat related note, one of last year's Happy Together Again Tour Headliners, Micky Dolenz, has finally posted an official statement regarding the cancellation of The Monkees' 45th Anniversary Reunion Tour mentioned in our pages yesterday.  Here's what he sent us:

The Monkee Tour has, indeed, been cancelled but for reasons that I cannot discuss at this time.  I can say that the reasons pertain to business and are internal matters only.  Needless to say, I am disappointed but the situation was unavoidable and I want to apologize to all the fans out there who will not be able to experience what was a wonderful show indeed. I also want to add that my solo tour, which started in Long Island on 7/22, continues through the end of the year.   
-- Micky Dolenz