■ By Susan Carrier / Contributed
Fortunate Son, the nation’s No. 1 tribute band to John Fogerty and Creedence Clearwater Revival, packed the Historic Hemet Theatre (HHT) on Saturday night. Since January, HHT has sold out each of the four concerts in its “Tribute Mania” concert series. Seems the word is out that there is a great concert venue right here in Hemet. Music fans from across southern California are flocking to our valley and helping build the success of the Foundation dedicated to preserving our vintage movie house.
One of the best features of HHT for these events is the large dance floor, spanning across the 40-foot stage. At Saturday’s event, dozens of fans – including visiting snowbirds — filled the floor over and over, cheering, clapping, and rockin’ away to each classic hit from CCR and John Fogerty. By the end of the show, most of the audience was on their feet, screaming the lyrics to “Centerfield.”
In honor of the passing of Chuck Berry on Saturday, lead singer Brad Ford saluted the music pioneer, saying that every musician today owes a debt to Berry’s genius.
It was obvious that band members Brad Ford, Mike Franceschini, Ron Ota and Dan Murdy were having a great time, feeding off the audience’s enthusiasm.
Afterwards they mingled with fans to take photos and sign autographs.
Following the show, many fans said this was the best concert yet…. a recurring theme at the HHT. Next up on the schedule is a tribute to The Beatles that will leave fans raving again — and definitely building on the SOLD-OUT streak. Tickets for the April 8 concert are expected to be gone more than a week before the event — another HHT first.
“The Complete Beatles Experience” performed by Britain’s Finest is a showcase of the music of The Beatles, including three costume changes spanning the evolution of the group’s music. Britain’s Finest has been featured twice on AVX TV’s “The World’s Greatest Tribute Bands” and was the only U.S. band invited to perform this year at the International Beatleweek Festival in Liverpool, England. Ruben Amaya, Benjamin Chadwick, Robert J. Vielma and Luis G. Renteria pull together a tribute that is a step back in time. The one tribute to The Beatles that is too good to miss.
If you have been thinking that it is time for you to see what’s going on down at the old theatre downtown…. this will be the perfect opportunity to join the fun.
Tickets for Tribute Mania events are $22 presale and $25 at the door. Showtime is 7 p.m. For a full lineup of upcoming events, call the box office at (951) 658-5950 or visit www.HistoricHemetTheatre.com.