The Nowhere Band
Aventura Arts and Cultural Center – 04/21/12
History repeated itself last night when the Beatles returned to the Aventura Arts and Cultural Center for a house rocking reunion. Okay, so it wasn’t the second time the Beatles played Aventura. And alright, maybe it wasn’t even the Beatles who captivated the audience, but who could blame me if I thought so? For last night, The Nowwhere Band (www.thenowhereband.com) took to the stage in front of a near-packed house for a two set, forty song show that brought everyone to their feet during their finale of encores. And those encore rallies were remarkable in and of themself as many of the audience was of an age to have actually seen the Beatles play Hamburg in 1960.
Now I for one remember as a seven year old child stealing my father’s prized battery operated radio one night – back when portable radios had batteries the size of Subway sandwiches – and hiding it under my covers to hear some music. That evening I quietly and cautiously tuned through the hum and crackle of white noise to find WABC, AM 770, and their signature DJ, Cousin Brucie (a.k.a. – Bruce Morrow). He was screaming and shouting about how the British invasion’s leading edge was about to play Shea Stadium on August 15, 1965. He then plunged me novice style – head first – into an evening of Beatles songs. Of course, I fell asleep mesmerized halfway through the show, the batteries burned out, and my you-know-what also got burned the next morning, but it was well worth it.
Now we can’t go back to Hamburg or Shea to see the Beatles, but you can hear them live every time The Nowhere Band is in town. A five man show including John (Chuck Noonan), Paul (Steve Lavalley), George (Donavon Christenson), Ringo (David Radford) and Billy Preston * (Karkey Karkalits), you’d be hard pressed to tell the difference between what you hear on stage and your old 45’s. For The Nowhere Band presents a near master’s thesis on the art and magic of what Beatle mania is all about. Playing period piece instruments and dressed in exact fab-four costumes, on a scale of one to four this show scores a fabulous. Okay, so maybe that wasn’t Paul who just played a vintage version of Yesterday (Help!, 1965, Parlophone), but you might as well complain that Frank Langela didn’t quite look the part in Frost/Nixon (2008, Universal Studios), or that John Malkovich wasn’t french enough to be the Vicomte de Valmont in Dangerous Laisons (1988, Warner Brothers).
And the music… oh, the music… you want me to review the music? Give me a break. It’s the Beatles! Just take out your old albums like A Hard Day’s Night (1964, Parlophone), Revolver (1966, Capitol) or Abbey Road (1969, Apple) and throw ‘em on your turntable. What do you mean you don’t have a turntable? Then you gotta see this show! It’s the closest I’ve ever gotten to that fearsome foursome phenom ever since I went under cover in 1965. And this time I got to do it without a spanking, though it would have been well worth it if I had. So if you weren’t fortunate enough to catch this show last night, but you still want to experience all the magic and all the imagination, be sure to catch The Nowhere Band when they return to the Aventura Arts and Cultural Center for their Christmas Show this coming December 1st, 2012.
* – Billy Preston did play on several of the Beatles final recordings and was at times referred to as the 5th Beatle.