Sunday, December 16, 2007

Rockin' and Rollin' Back In Time

Warning: If you were born after 1965 you may be asking "Who??" as some entertainers are mentioned below.
One of the most popular theaters here in Branson is Dick Clark's American Bandstand Theater. The driving theme of the theater is '57, as in 1957, not the average age of the audience! Trivia question: When did American Bandstand go on the air? Answer: 1957! Besides featuring icons of rock and roll music on the stage, the theater has a car museum on the lower level. All of the cars are 1957 models and are restored to beautiful, pristine condition. The showroom is quite a blast from the past with displays of 1950's homes, gas stations, car dealers, and even police cars. It's like walking through Mayberry!

Last week we enjoyed a high energy run down memory lane with Paul Revere and the Raiders, and Bill Medley, half of the duo The Righteous Brothers. (Bobby Hatfield passed away in 2003.) Paul Revere is counting down to his 70th birthday on January 7. (I'm hearing groans from the baby boomers!) He is still going strong --- wearing the trademark tight white pants and tri-corn hat. At this point the youngsters are asking "Who??". This group was so hot with hits like "Hungry For Those Good Times, Baby", "Kicks", and "Steppin' Out". Mark Lindsay used to be the lead singer. For the past 4 years Darrin Medley has been in the spotlight. Darrin is the son of Bill Medley of the Righteous Brothers. With Bill Medley the second act on the ticket, we enjoyed Darrin's versatility throughout the show.

Bill Medley's half of the show featured some of the greatest songs of all times: "You've Lost That Lovin' Feeling", "Unchained Melody", and "Rock and Roll Heaven". Bobby Hatfield was greatly missed and his "brother" Bill provided a tribute in pictures to his partner of over 40 years. Son Darrin doesn't have the bass voice like his father, but he proved to be a fitting partner for the duets. Bill has gone on to record blues and gospel. The voice is raspier, but the reach-down-and-grab-your-soul emotion is irresistible.

The Christmas shows in Branson are wrapping up for the season. Until March it will be pretty quiet in town. If you have ever been stuck in traffic on "the strip", Hwy 76 through town, this is a season to look forward to! Actually, the locals know alot of short cuts to avoid the "longest parking lot in the country"!

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