With the success of Peter Jackson’s Beatles documentary, “Get Back,” came a renewed interest in the act whom many have called “the greatest band of all time”… The Beatles. There are a number of Beatles tribute acts that one could see – from The Fab Faux to the long-running act Rain – but to see a group of legendary musicians come together to pay their homage is a different thing all together.
It Was 50 Years Ago – a Tribute to the Beatles is an all-star lineup of musicians coming to The City National Grove of Anaheim on May 28th. The impressive roster includes Todd Rundgren, Christopher Cross, and Denny Laine. All of the artists will be performing their own hits, along with select tracks from the “Rubber Soul” and “Revolver” albums.
This isn’t the first time that Rundgren and Cross have attempted a project like this; they previously did a similar tour in 2019 playing songs from The Beatles’ “White Album.” Todd Rundgren explained, “This time we thought: Wouldn’t it be great if we played the best songs The Beatles ever recorded for a change? ‘Rubber Soul’ and ‘Revolver’ are the boys peaking in front of our eyes and redefining what pop music would be for the foreseeable future. This is going to be fun.”
Rundgren was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2021 for his work as a producer for such albums as the self-titled New York Dolls debut and Meatloaf’s “Bat Out of Hell.” An artist in his own right, Rundgren created hits “Hello It’s Me,” “I Saw the Light,” and “Bang the Drum.”
He was previously in the rock band Nazz, and fronted his own group, Utopia.
Christopher Cross gained great success as a singer songwriter with number one hits such as “Sailing,” “Ride Like the Wind,” and “Arthur’s Theme.”
Both artists had previously toured with Ringo Starr & His All Starr Band, and they are joined on this tour by Denny Laine, who was in both The Moody Blues and a founding member of Wings with Paul McCartney. Joining them on stage will be former lead singer of the band Chicago, Jason Scheff, and Joey Molland who was in the first band signed to The Beatles’ Apple records label, Badfinger.
“Rubber Soul” and “Revolver” were pivotal albums in the careers of The Beatles. Released within eight months of each other, they marked a transition in songwriting from the early teeny bopper sound of “I Want to Hold Your Hand” and “I Saw Her Standing There,” to the more mature and polished sound of “Eleanor Rigby” and “Norwegian Wood,” which was their first song to feature a sitar.
Expect to hear hits such as “Norwegian Wood,” “You Won’t See Me,” “Drive My Car,” “Yellow Submarine,” “Eleanor Rigby,” and “Got to Get You Into My Life.”
In addition to the Rundgren and Cross hits previously mentioned, you may also catch Chicago’s “25 or 6 to 4” and “Hard to Say I’m Sorry,” Badfinger’s “Baby Blue,” and Denny Laine’s “Go Now.”