LIVE: Hey Jude…The Tribute @ the Madison Theater, 4/29/16

May 9th, 2016, 4:00 pm by Greg

Paul

Review and photographs by Ed Conway

It’s Friday night, and I am starting my All-Beatles Weekend (the next night is The Fab Faux at The Egg). Unfortunately, we got a little bad news as Apple Records would not grant permission for the Madison Theater to screen the film “Help!” prior to the concert, as had originally been scheduled. (Rumor has it Apple has stopped public showings of the Beatles movies). Instead, they showed an interesting documentary about the Beatles; not the same, but, as they say, shit happens. Audience members who had bought tickets in advance were told about the switch in advance, so many arrived towards the end of the documentary. Since the theater was fairly full, there was a lot of jostling for spots in the dark so by the time the intermission was over, there were very few seats left; a good omen for the night.

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If you’ve never seen Hey Jude…The Tribute, they are, as you may guess, a Beatles tribute band, and, like many, they come complete with period costumes. In addition, they employ period-correct instruments and gear. They also possess an uncannily similar sense of humor during their between-song stage banter, complete with fairly good impressions by Paul (Brad Jarvis) and John (Tom Raider), both of whom performed as Imagining Lennon & McCartney prior to forming this group.

The quiet one of the group, George was played by Rick Bedrosian, best known as the bassist/bandleader of Hair of the Dog, but he put down his bass and picked up a Rickenbacker to play pretty much note-for-note lead guitar. Laying down the Beatle beat was Don Ackerman, who had Ringo’s understated, but solid, drum style down pat. I realize the Fab Four, only had four members, but they frequently had guests playing keyboards (think Billy Preston), and this incarnation wasn’t any different as Rich Coogan held down the title of the fifth Beatle. His job, however, was a lot more than just keyboards, as he also had to fill in, at various times, for strings, brass, sound effects and other assorted duties (he also had some of the more outlandish costumes, since the other four were kind of stuck in replicas of iconic clothes).

Musically, the Fab Five were what you would expect, pretty much note-for-note with all of the classic, instantly recognizable riffs in place. Each of the “Beatles” sang their songs as they had appeared on the various albums. One of the highlights was Raider, accompanied by Coogan, performing “Imagine” in Lennon’s iconic white suit. Other crowd favorites were “Yellow Submarine” and the encore (naturally) of “Hey Jude.” The entire evening of music was very enjoyable, and a very nice lead-in to the next evening’s show.

SECOND OPINIONS
Sara Foss’ review at Thinking It Through

ALSO READ
Buffet & Beatles: Hey Jude…The Tribute @ the Normanside
LIVE: Hey Jude…The Tribute @ Saratoga City Center, 12/31/13
LIVE: Hey Jude… The Tribute @ the Parting Glass, 11/9/13
LIVE: Hey Jude…The Tribute @ Guilderland Performing Arts Center, 7/1/13

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