Thursday, May 15, 2014

Another Great Concert Review From One Of Our Readers

It is just wonderful to see all the concert reviews!  For one thing, it is great to see so many concert opportunities.  For another, it is heart-warming to read someone else's words on the subject. (positive and not-so-positive included) 
Then you're going to LOVE today's feature ... another superstar event with lots of big names from our favorite decade of music ... read on!  (kk)   

kk - 
I, too, attended the Alan Parsons Project show Saturday night in anticipation of an incredible evening of music. You don't mention your seating location, but mine was main floor center, 10 rows from the stage. From my vantage point, singer P.J. Olson was obviously battling a cold, stepping back from the mic several times to cough, causing him to turn his back to the audience and go off stage. Several times his voice cracked to reach notes he otherwise would have attained. Hats off to the "show must go on" effort, but it was painful at times to see him struggle. I also thought (perhaps in part to cover the vocals) the mix of the concert was overcompensated. Maybe with the sound board off center, tucked in the left corner, this lead to a muddied mix. But it was not clear and too loud for a small venue. Several times I thought if Alan Parsons, with all his engineering prowess heard the show from the seats, he would have dropped the guitar and manned the board.
But having stated the aforementioned flaws, I am aware of Alan Parsons significance in rock history, the scope of his work and the huge success of his recordings. I was glad I attended and knocked off another must see live acts from the bucket list. But having seen most big name acts in rock live in concert, this was not a "top five" show from for me. The Live From Madrid concert dvd from several years ago is a much better representation of what the Alan Parsons Project at their best should sound like.
Cedar Rapids, Iowa
As a first time experience for me, I can honestly say that we were COMPLETELY blown away ... in total awe of this great act.  I will agree that PJ had a couple of vocal issues in the first show ... but Eric Woolfson left some pretty big shoes to fill vocally.  And (as mentioned in this column before) I will agree that the sound system at The Arcada Theatre seems to always be a little heavy on the bass end ... this is most evident when the artists speak between songs (and was a REAL issue the other night at "The Wrecking Crew" screening when at times you could actually feel the seats rattling ... this is something they will have to address during the next round of renovations.)  But I stand by my review ... having seen as many concerts as I have, this one ranks, without question, as one of the best EVER. (I will have to check out the Madrid DVD you referred to ... because if that blows THIS show away, then this sounds like a "must have" purchase for me!  Although, as I recall, Parsons made a comment during one of the shows that the NEW shows they were filming would be better than the Madrid disc currently on the market.)  kk  

How good was it?  Judge for yourself.  Here's a short clip posted on the Onesti Entertainment website this week.  (You should link this to our concert review, Ron, to give fans the TOTAL experience!!!)  kk

And, speaking of great shows at The Arcada, here's a special offer for another one, coming up in October.  Here's your chance to save 20% on tickets to see Tommy James and the Shondells!  

This week's promo code is TOMMY20 
for 20% off Tommy James and The Shondells

OCT 25 - 8 PM

"Hanky Panky," "Mony Mony," "I Think We're Alone Now," "Crimson and Clover," "Crystal Blue Persuasion," "Draggin' The Line" ...
The music of Tommy James is heard continuously, everyday, in every country in the world: on radio, television or a film soundtrack. To date, he's sold over 100 million records and has been awarded 23 gold singles plus nine gold and platinum albums.
Expires May 21, 2014 at Midnight

Use online at

And now on with the show ...


We're hearing about more and more of these "package shows" ... much like the old days with things like Dick Clark's Caravan Of Stars tours. 

This particular concert review, sent in by Forgotten Hits Reader Jim Foster, sounds especially interesting ... check it out!

KOOL 103.1 CARAVAN OF STARS Saturday, May 10, 2014

Carl Perkins Civic Center

Jackson, Tennessee

Featuring Ronnie Dove, 
Grace Broussard (Dale & Grace), 
Beverly Bremers, Don Ciccone 
(Critters, Four Seasons, 
Tommy James & The Shondells), 
Jimmy Gilmer , Billy Joe Royal and 
The Cowsills (Susan, Bob and Paul)

I was so excited when I first heard about this show and decided that I definitely had to go to see all my favorite stars. I had a great time in Jackson, meeting and talking to all the stars and, most of all, to have a chance to see all the music I grew up performed live.  The KOOL 103.1 Caravan Of Stars shows should be on your list as a must see.  I loved the show and Jackson so much I am returning in October for the next one! 

I had the time of my life in Jackson before, during and after the concert.  Who would ever think that in the heart of Tennessee there is a 50,000 watt powerhouse oldies station playing more great oldies than probably any other station in the country?  Jackson is located between Memphis and Nashville.  How many stations have you heard play Billy Stewart’s ‘Summertime’ and Spirit’s ‘I Got A Line On You’ lately?  It was so refreshing to hear some great oldies while searching the dial through all the country music stations in Tennessee. 

Gerald Hunt, Sr. and his son are very special people who love oldies and the artists that they bring to Jackson.  It was a total surprise to me to see Gerald.  I knew I recognized him as I had seen him working hard bringing us the Sonny Geraci Birthday Benefit and Fundraiser in Streetsboro, Ohio last fall.  What a super guy and pleasant surprise!  We need more people like him! The best part of his shows are the Meet and Greet before, at intermission and after the shows.  It was great meeting, talking to and being able to get memorabilia signed as well as being able to purchase pictures, t-shirts, CD’s and DVD’s of their music!  You will definitely have a great time I promise you!    

Ronnie Dove  
From the very first moment I met Ronnie Dove he became a great friend.  I have all of Ronnie’s music in my collection and, to be honest, sometimes you overlook some of the greatest music when you have so much.  After meeting and hearing Ronnie, I will be listening to his music more often for sure.  Ronnie is a true talent and very professional.  He loves his fans and really knows how to ‘Wow’ an audience.  I was treated to one of the best performances I have ever seen as Ronnie opened the show.  I can honestly say that I love all of his music and hope to see him again soon.  My friends Tom Diehl and George Greene have been friends with Ronnie Dove for a long time and I was treated to a preview of his new CD coming out on Real Gone Records in July.  It’s fantastic, believe me!  Ronnie has a great website,  Ronnie tells a lot of great stories about his encounters during his career.  One of the best is his association with Jimmy Elledge. He always does one of Jimmy’s songs at every performance.  If you ever get the chance to see him, do it!  You won’t be sorry.  
SET LIST:  Mountain Of Love; Right Or Wrong; When Likin' Turns To Lovin'; Cry; One Kiss For Old Time's  Sake; A Little Bit Of Heaven; Funny How Time Slips Away (duet with Billy Joe Royal - a Tribute To Jimmy Elledge)   

Grace Broussard (Dale & Grace)  
One of the very first performers I met at Jackson was Grace Broussard of Dale and Grace and her sisters.  Grace is a very talented lady with a wonderful family.  I loved watching her sing on stage.  It was so wonderful to see her as she usually performs with her family in the area where they live.  She is a real treat and you don’t want to miss seeing her!  It was so great watching her and Billy Joe Royal sing the Dale and Grace hits.  It was definitely one of my personal favorite highlights of the show!
SET LIST:  Let The Good Times Roll; Hey Baby; Stop And Think It Over  (with Billy Joe Royal); I'm Leavin' It All Up To You  (with Billy Joe Royal)   

Beverly Bremers  
I have always been a fan of Beverly Bremers and her music.  It was fantastic seeing her perform live.  She is definitely one beautiful and talented lady.  I especially enjoyed meeting her and talking with her about her career and music. I definitely am looking forward to seeing her perform again soon!  She has a new CD that I just absolutely love with some great sixties classics on it! 
Her set list included Joy To The World (with the Cowsills); a Sixties Girl Medley that included I'm Sorry; Where The Boys Are; It's My Party; Downtown; Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow; You Can't Hurry Love and You Don't Have To Say You Love Me, followed by her own hit Don't Say You Don't Remember.  She topped that off with a medley from Hair that featured Hair (with the Cowsills); Easy To Be Hard and Aquarius / Let The Sunshine In   

Don Ciccone (Critters, Four Seasons, 
Tommy James & The Shondells)  
Don Ciccone is fantastic and puts on a great show!  I remember Don mostly from his years with the Critters and one of my all time favorites is ‘Don’t Let The Rain Fall On Me’.  Don performed his two classics from his days with the Critters.  He then told us about being almost drafted during the Viet Nam war and decided to enlist.  After his service, he said that Frankie Valli called him, asking him to be a member of the Four Seasons.  He said ‘Yes’ and the rest is history!  Don also was musical director and a member of Tommy James & The Shondells!  It was great hearing him sing all the classics!  I would definitely love to see him again soon!
SET LIST:  Younger Girl; Mr. Dieingly Sad; Hanky Panky; I Think We're Alone Now; Mony, Mony; Can't Take My Eyes Of You; Who Loves You and December, 1963 (Oh What A Night)   

Jimmy Gilmer  
Jimmy is one of my all time favorite artists! He still has it and I absolutely loved his performance in Jackson.  From ‘Sugar Shack’ to ‘Bottle Of Wine’ he had the place rocking and singing along!  I loved hearing him sing ‘Bottle Of Wine’ with the rare additional verse and ‘Come On React’.  He had us all singing with him.  I really want to see him again.  Meeting Jimmy and spending time talking with him was a real highlight of my trip to Jackson for the Caravan Of Stars Concert!
SET LIST:  Sugar Shack; Daisy Petal Pickin'; Every Day (a Tribute to Buddy Holly); Come On React and Bottle Of Wine (with additional verse)   

John Ford Coley  
I have always been a John Ford Coley fan ... since his early days with Southwest FOB along with Dan Seals.  It was a real treat to meet him and hear him sing and perform live for the very first time.  I absolutely love John and his music. I especially enjoyed the stories he told before performing some of his classic songs. John is very talented and treated me like an old friend at the hotel and during the meet and greet at the concert.  I loved all the hits and especially his duet of the Everly Brothers classic ‘Devoted To You’ with Susan Cowsill.  One of the highlights of the night was his song ‘Soldier In The Rain’, which he dedicated to all the veterans in attendance. (He received a standing ovation for that one.)  He also performed and dedicated the song that was Dan Seals' and his favorite song to perform, ‘Love Is The Answer’. A great moment!  I am really looking forward to seeing him again soon! You definitely have to see him!
SET LIST:  We'll Never Have To Say Goodbye Again; Nights Are Forever With You; Devoted To You (with Susan Cowsill followed by a Classical Piano Solo; then Soldier In The Rain; I'd Love To See You Tonight and Love Is The Answer   

Billy Joe Royal  
I absolutely love Billy Joe Royal. This was the second time I have seen him perform. I saw him in Streetsboro, Ohio, last fall at the Sonny Geraci Birthday-Benefit Concert.  He is a very warm and kind person and is loved by his fans as well as his fellow stars.  Everyone, including myself, were totally surprised as him came out in a tuxedo for his performance in Jackson. I found myself singing along with Billy Joe and I don’t sing much.  It always gives me chills to hear him sing ‘I Knew You When’.  It was fun seeing Susan Cowsill run out and sing backup on ‘My Girl’.  Billy Joe sang an outstanding version of ‘Mack The Knife’  I am a Billy Joe Royal fan for life!  
Billy Joe's set list included Cherry Hill Park; My Girl (Susan - Background Vocals; I Knew You When (False Start - I loved it; I Knew You When; Burned Like A Rocket; Mack The Knife (he did an Outstanding Version and Down In The Boondocks (complete with his dance moves ... and he broke into a smile when he saw John Ford Coley on backup vocals!)   

The Cowsills  
I have been wanting to see the Cowsills for such a long time and finally had the opportunity in Jackson.  I was told how great they are from their fellow music stars and my friends who have seen them.  They were right! The Cowsills were amazing.  Susan, Bob and Paul really know how to put on a show. I had the opportunity to meet and talk with all of them. They are so much fun to be around and it was definitely a major highlight of my trip.
Do not miss the Cowsills!  I love their music and plan to see them every chance I get!
Set List:  The Rain, The Park & Other Things; Indian Lake; Silver Threads & Golden Needles; Helplessly Hoping; Love American Style; I Think I Love You and 

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-- Jim Foster