IBJOpinion

LOU'S VIEWS: Copy that

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share
Lou Harry

If imitation is truly the sincerest form of flattery, then Indy stages have been covered with some serious sweet talk of late.

Returning from out of town on a recent Saturday, I found “Jersey Boys,” telling the story of The Four Seasons, still playing at the Murat. Pike Performing Arts Center was offering an Elvis tribute concert. Kurt Elling was playing the music of the Brill Building song masters at the Cabaret. And the Palladium was featuring The Fab Faux, a tribute to the Beatles.
 

ae-fabfaux-4-15col.jpg The Fab Faux’s Jan. 19 concert at the Palladium offered musical excellence and, mercifully, no Beatles’ wigs. (Photo courtesy of Ramon Guajardo)

Back when I used to use a fake I.D. to see Backstreets, a Springsteen cover band, at a Jersey shore club, I thought I understood the appeal of once-removed acts: When you know you aren’t going to see the original, you take what you can get. And if you love the songs and squint your eyes, you can get a reasonable facsimile of the real thing.

I’ve since learned that their appeal—and range—is more complicated than that. And in the case of The Fab Faux, which I ultimately chose that night, much more interesting than immitative.

Its moniker might imply mop-top wigs and Nehru jackets, but The Fab Faux focuses on the music, not the appearance. Frontmen Will Lee and Frank Agnello look more like Lewis Black and Iggy Pop than Lennon and McCartney. Nobody’s “playing” Ringo. There’s no film footage of peace, love and Vietnam protest. And the band consists of five players, not four.

From the opening strains of “Back in the U.S.S.R.”—complete with airplane sound effects—to the closing “Hey Jude” sing-a-long, The Fab Faux manages something remarkable, making us enjoy and reappreciate the Beatles catalog without trying to reinvent it or impersonate the talent that created it. These are expert musicians but not cold, dispassionate ones. Playfulness goes with the near-perfection showcasing a combination of respect, talent and joy unlike anything I’ve seen in a cover band.

To be sure, it took the Palladium crowd a little while to warm up to the concept—and for some sound glitches to be worked out. But Lee (familiar to insomniacs as the bassist for David Letterman’s house band) and company demonstrated the kind of confidence that comes from playing together for 15 years—more than double the duration of the Fab Four.

(One of the five was a sub, Jim Boggia, who seemed to channel Jim Morrison’s look and Mick Jagger’s moves in a bring-down-the-house rendition of “Oh, Darling.”)

Very quickly, the band convinced the crowd to go along for the ride, tossing off any worry about whether their favorite Beatles tunes were going to be on the play list. So, while we didn’t hear “Twist and Shout,” we did get “Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite.” The reprise of “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” stood in for the primary. And how many other Beatles’ tribute bands are going to play “Anna (Go to Him)”?

In a world where just about any song ever recorded is nearly instantly accessible from our desktops, The Fab Faux boldly made a case for the Beatles tunes as live music. By honoring the music instead of trying to put their own stamp on it, each player nonetheless shined. And I left with a newfound appreciation for music that I thought had nothing new to offer.•

__________

This column appears weekly. Send information on upcoming arts and entertainment events to lharry@ibj.com.
 

ADVERTISEMENT

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
 
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. Uh, sorry Johnnie, but you are incorrect. Despite the assertions by yourself and various defenders and captains, sports attendance is NOT off significantly at most sporting events in the US. Variances in attendance has been in the range of single digits, both + & - for years now. MLB has had most of its best overall attendance nubers in the last decade, and that trend has been consistent for most major sporting events. The number one issue cited by most fans when asked about attendance is the overall cost of attending. The presence of HD and big screen televisions in home doesn't even register, as a factor for not attending an event. VALUE in the product is the key, and apparently is something lacking in the current ICS. What other explanation is there when with what is routinely touted as the "best" racing on the planet, fans are staying away in DROVES. A "close" title battle into the last event at Fontana, with the "cars and stars" of the ICS, and who showed up? MAYBE 8K. Sorry, but HD TV isn't to blame for that kind of fan apathy.

  2. Do you need finance to establish your business ? Are you interested in getting a loan at 3% from our private company? If so please Email: suntrust_oil@blumail.org

  3. If she was worth the $ the public outcry over direct tv dropping them would have kept them on their dishes as we have seen with other companies. I too quit watching channel 13 after she showed up since I left channel 8 because of her all show rather than production results. When Randy on 8 corrected her she had a big head and incorrectly challenged his correction for pronunciation of a city. Other antics while she matures was too much for me with her very inaccurate forecasts. All the forecasters were predicting rain until Thursday except Chris. They predicted sunny on Thursday but instead of rain until Thursday upon which the sun would finally make it out in full glory Chris was right on the money just as I too predicted looking at the radar on weather.gov. One thing I love about Angela is the fear you can see in her every time it thunders in the winter. It far exceeds the entertainment value of her body language (high heel noise drags, depression, etc) when her forecasts are so incorrect. Her hair stands on end, you have to see it!!!

  4. Good Day, Apply For A Loan I am Mr Fernadez Antonio, a private Loan lender and a cooperate financial for real estate and any kinds of business financing. I also offer Loans to individuals, Firms and cooperate bodies at 3% interest rate We offer any kind of loans. email us via fernadezloaninvest@outlook.com LOAN APPLICATION FORM First name:......................... Middle name:......................... Last name:........................................ Date of birth (yyyy-mm-dd):....................... Gender:........................................... Marital status:................................... Total Amount Needed............................... Loan Duration.................................... Address:.......................................... City:............................................. State/province:................................... Zip/postal code:.................................. Country:.......................................... Phone:............................................ Fax:.............................................. Mobile/cellular:.................................. Monthly Income.................................... Occupation:....................................... Best Regard, Mr Fernadez Antonio.

  5. i will love to share my testimony to you all the people in world i got married to my husband about 2 year ago we start having problems at home like we stop sleeping on the same bed,fighting about little things he always comes home late at night,drinking too much and sleeping with other women out side i have never love any man in my life except him. he is the father of my child and i don't want to loose him because we have worked so hard together to become what we are and have today .few month ago he now decided to live me and the kid,being a single mother can be hard sometimes and so i have nobody to turn to and i was heart broken.i called my mom and explain every thing to her,my mother told me about DR.okoro how he helped her solve the problem between her and my dad i was surprise about it because they have been without each other for three and a half years and it was like a miracle how they came back to each other. i was directed to DR. okoro on his email:okorospell@gmail.com and explain everything to him,so he promise me not to worry that he will cast a spell and make things come back to how we where so much in love again and that it was another female spirit that was controlling my husband he told me that my problem will be solved within two days if i believe i said OK So he cast a spell for me and after two days my love came back asking me to forgive him i Am so happy now. so that why i decided to share my experience with every body that have such problem contact Dr okoro the great spell caster on his email addresses spellcasterforlove@outlook.com

ADVERTISEMENT