Friday, July 17, 2015

Happy Together Tour 2015

We received a nice email from Carl Giammarese of The Buckinghams last week, offering sort of an overview of this year's Happy Together Tour Line-Up ... as well as a little insight into the behind-the-scenes life of a rock star on the road.  (We're hoping to hear from more of this year's artists as the tour continues ... so stay tuned for weekly updates in Forgotten Hits!)    

The Buckinghams have been part of the line-up numerous times over the years, as have The Grass Roots and Mark Lindsay.  Naturally, the headliners are always The Turtles, for whom the tour was named in the first place.   

The Association's roots go all the way back to the very first Happy Together Tour, circa 1985 ... can you believe this show has been on the road for thirty years now?!?!?   

New to The Happy Together Stage this year are The Cowsills ... who are playing to rave reviews as audiences reconnect with this band for the first time in several years.  (We caught them at The Arcada Theatre last year and were blown away ... this is an act that has to be seen and heard to believed!)   

The Happy Together Tour hits the Chicagoland area on Friday, August 21st, with an appearance at The Paramount Theatre in Aurora ... and we can't wait to see it!  (An updated schedules appears below).   

Meanwhile, here is Carl's "from the road" report, exclusively for Forgotten Hits Readers ...

Hi Kent -  
The Buckinghams are happy to be once again invited to be a part of the tour. I think it is the best tour going this year, and maybe the best Happy Together Tour yet. I think that's because the lineup is so strong and all the acts match up so well. 
The Grass Roots with Dusty Hanvey and Mark Dawson really rock. They do a great job of connecting with the audience and they play the Grass Roots songs with true authenticity.   
Mark Lindsay can still rock, and still sings great ... what can I say, he’s just a great entertainer. 
Some of my favorite songs are from the Association with original members Jules Alexander, Jim Yester and Del Ramos ... its just great to hear those beautiful songs again sung by the guys that made them.  
The Cowsills are a surprise addition this year, not that I didn’t think they’d sound fabulous, but they are new to the tour and I’m sure we’ll see a lot more of them on future tours. Their harmonies are spectacular! Along with the energy and stories they tell just grabs everyone. 
The Turtles, Howard Kaylan and Mark Volman, are as zany as ever! Musically they sound great and Howard sounds as strong as ever! I don’t want to give it away but they always come up with a surprise opening that's a killer. 
We are all very fortunate to have a back up band of this caliber ... Godfrey Townsend, Steve Murphy, Greg Smith and Manny Focarazzo are the best! I will say that the 20-25 minutes each of us are on stage is fabulous ... we are so fortunate to have our fans who continue to come out and support us…they know how to have a great time.  
The other side of it is I don’t know if everyone realizes how hard it is traveling around the country on tour buses, planes and automobiles. We could put on 15,000 miles before the 2015 tour ends. I must say our tour manager Ron Hausfeld does a great job of keeping us on schedule and keeping us organized. Ron and his company, Flower Power, has run this tour smoothly for several years now. A typical day might be an over night drive on the bus, arriving at 7 am then waiting for a hotel room for possibly four hours. When you get in your room you have just enough time to take a shower and iron your clothes for the show. 
Ahhh it's a glamorous life ... but we love it!  
Carl Giammarese


Tonight and Tomorrow Night:  Friday, July 17th and Saturday, July 18th - Chinook Winds Casino Resort - Lincoln City, OR

Sunday, July 19th - Clearwater River Casino and Lodge - Lewistown, ID

Wednesday, July 22nd - Humphrey's Concerts By The Bay - San Diego, CA

Thursday, July 23rd - Chumash Casino - Santa Ynex, CA

Friday, July 24th - Golden Nugget Casino Showroom - Las Vegas, NV

Saturday, July 25th - Campe Verde - Campe Verde, AZ

Sunday, July 26th - Pacific Amphitheater - Costa Mesa, CA

Friday, July 31st - Lynn Auditorium - Lynn, MA 

Saturday, August 1st - Paramount Theatre - Asbury Park, NJ

Sunday, August 2nd - State Theatre - New Brunswick,NJ

Monday, August 3rd - ArtsQuest Center At SteelStacks - Bethlehem, PA

Tuesday, August 4th - Mayo Performing Arts Center - Morristown, NJ

Wednesday, August 5th - Bergen Performing Arts Center - Englewood, NJ

Friday, August 7th - War Memorial Auditorium - Nashville, TN

Sunday, August 9th - Wisconsin State Fair - West Allis, WI

Wednesday, August 12th - Indian State Fairgrounds - Indianapolis, IN

Thursday, August 13th - Missouri State Fairgrounds - Sedalia, MO

Saturday, August 15th - Little River Casino Resort - Manistee, MI

Sunday, August 16th - Performing Arts Center - Bolingbrook, IL

Wednesday, August 19th - Fraze Pavilion For The Perfroming Arts - Kettering, OH

Thursday, August 20th - Hard Rock Live - Northfield, OH

Friday, August 21st - Paramount Theatre - Aurora, IL

Saturday, August 22nd - Casino Rama Entertainment Centre - Rama, ON

Sunday, August 23rd - Foelinger Theatre - Fort Wayne, IN

Wednesday, August 26th - Effingham Performance Center - Effingham, IL

Thursday, August 27th - Kentucky State Fairgrounds - Louisville, KY

Friday, August 28th - Oaklawn Racetrack - Hot Springs, AR

Saturday, August 29th - Riverside Casino and Gold Resort - Riverside, IA

Sunday, August 30th - Bluestem Center For The Arts - Moorhead,MN

Monday, August 31st - Minnesota State Fairgrounds - Saint Paul, MN

Wednesday, September 2nd - Mahoning County Fairgrounds - Canfield, OH

Since this IS Forgotten Hits, let's take a look at some of the hits by this year's Happy Together Artists that have slipped through the cracks of radio's extremely tight programming policies ... such as ...
You Know What I Mean by The Turtles - Yeah, I know, Howard Kaylan hates this song ... but I love it ... and so do many others amongst our readers who have sung the song's praises over the years.  Wouldn't it be nice to see the guys perform this one again during one of their upcoming summer jaunts across the country?

No Fair At All by The Association ... a much bigger hit here in Chicago than it was nationally, this is another track that really showcases the group's exquisite harmonies and vocal talents.

Back In Love Again by The Buckinghams - their last big hit (and a great one at that), this one was written by Marty Grebb, with whom (and for whom) the bulk of the 1967 line-up took to the stage recently to raise money to help with Marty's medical bills.

And The Grass Won't Pay No Mind by Mark Lindsay - there are plenty of Raiders songs to choose from but I decided to go with one of Lindsay's solo tracks.  His best known solo hits were Arizona and Silver Bird, of course ... but I always liked his treatment of this Neil Diamond-penned classic, too.  Thanks to Me-TV-FM, we get to hear this one here in Chicago again every once in a while.

We Can Fly by The Cowsills - this was their follow-up hit to the chart-topper The Rain, The Park And Other Things - personally, I prefer Indian Lake - but we do still hear that one every now and then - so We Can Fly became the obvious choice.

Lovin' Things by The Grass Roots - another tough choice. (It was between this one, The River Is Wide and Bella Linda - but I think Lovin' Things has exhibited longer staying power - and I just love hearing it again!)