Mt. Vernon Register-News


August 14, 2009

Musically Speaking: Rock n Roll in a constant state of change


Being a member of the Class of 1975 at Mt. Vernon Township High School, I realize that I spent my formative years witnessing a renaissance of what was to become known as rock music.

From Chuck Berry and Bill Haley, original rock ‘n rollers, to surf music with the Beach Boys and conceptual music of the Beatles, rock ‘n roll has been in a constant state of change, even though some things never seem to.

There have been Elvis impersonators for decades now. Those guys who dress in white leisure suits, sometimes with flashy sequins, who have long sideburns and sunglasses and pretend to be Elvis Presley. There will most likely be Elvis impersonators for decades to come. Some acts from the early days of the rock ‘n roll era are thought to be one-of-a-kind.

Other acts, such as Sha-Na-Na, capitalized on the art of re-vitalizing older music.

But over the last decade, retro-style tribute bands have secured a place in the entertainment world. I’m sure that you have heard about some acts that tour the country, performing a show based on the music of a legendary rock-act, mostly from the 1960s and 70s.

There are bands out there based on Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, the Who, Aerosmith, Black Sabbath and many more.

The premise that people will want to come and hear a catalog of music from their favorite artists, is the same premise that is being utilized by my guests on the Musically Speaking radio program this Sunday at 6 p.m.

I will be in the studio with the members of local band Eye of the Needle. This newly-formed act consists of King City area musicians Keith Woods, Rick Kirkpatrick, Roger Greenwalt and Brent Hahn. I’m certain that middle-aged music fans in this area recall the performing exploits of each over the years.

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