Rain, the Beatles tribute band - any one seen them?

I saw a PBS show on Rain and thought they looked and sounded fairly authentic. Checked my schedule and found that I’m working the weekend they’re in town, so gave up any thoughts of attending.

L & B (lo and behold, of course), the very next day I received tickets to the show as a gift. Guess I’ll have to miss work that day.

Has anyone here seen them, or at least heard of them? Opinions?

I hadn’t heard of them until just now! Just went to Youtube to find videos and overall they’re quite good – as a whole, they’re certainly a tight band. Individually when you judge them as Beatles vocal imitators, they’re more hit and miss.

Their Pauls (they appear to have two – one right-handed and one left-handed as God intended :D) are definitely the most accurate. Hey Jude | Getting Better All the Time | Blackbird (probably the best one)

The John is okay, but misses John’s admittedly unique, somewhat nasal, ethereal sound. Across the Universe | Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds | I’ll Get You
And the George is pretty off vocally – but a damn good guitarist: While My Guitar Gently Weeps | Do You Want to Know a Secret? (better than While - and here they’re playing The Cavern! Now that’s ballsy!)

Mind you, they’re decent singers, I’m just talking about the vocal matching to the originals.
As a gestalt entity, as I said, they’re good: This Boy. Do they honor the incredible music and general energy of the best group in the world? Yes, I think so. I bet it’s a helluva fun experience overall.

I saw them earlier this week and while they are the first Beatles Tribute Band I’ve seen, I thought they were pretty good. They looked the part and sounded pretty close.

I saw them twice, once with my son at the Academy of Music in Philadelphia and once in Newark at the NJPAC. Both terrific shows (I saw left-handed Pauls both times, I believe). They performed professionally, light-hearted and with humor, which is a must for a tribute show not to come off as self-conscious, despite the performers wearing wigs and brightly colored silk military uniforms. :slight_smile: The sets and videos are impressive, and you can see how well you do on the Beatles trivia questions that come up on the screens before the show.

I’m a Beatles geek who loves tribute bands, even bad ones that I can make fun of. Some unrequested observations:

[ul][]A tribute band’s Paul is the key. To nail the Beatles sound “Paul” has to nail the high notes, hard and true, just as Paul did. Paul had an impressive range, so no faking it–e.g., no falsettos to hit a high note where none was used on the record–howl and shriek and croon and harmonize just as the master did (as close as possible, anyway), and it’ll sound like the lads, at least close, during the harmonies. “Real John” obviously was as important a voice in the Beatles, but in a tribute band, John’s high baritone is easier to fake and blend in. Paul has to hit the high notes like a trumpet.[]I only recently noticed that a majority of left-handed Pauls are actually right-handed guitar players who learned to play the bass “backwards” just for the tribute band. I noticed when I saw a Paul playing acoustic guitar right-handed for “Yesterday,” the only time in the show he played right-handed. (They actually flipped him on the video screen, but they couldn’t trick me!)[]Soft lighting is key. Some of the performers I’ve seen were a bit long in the tooth, especially for the mop-top part of the show. Rain was not too bad in this regard, as I recall, but we didn’t sit too close either.[]Ringo almost never sounds right.[]“George” will play all the hard guitar parts, even the ones that other Beatles played on the record (e.g., all 3 solos at the end of the Abbey Road medley), so don’t be disappointed at such inaccuracies. Most Georges will make up for it though, getting that little shuffle-dance thing down that he did, or leading into the solo on “All My Loving” using his thumb, just like real-George did on Sullivan.[]For some reason, most of the Beatles tribute bands I’ve seen have Paul doing most of the between-song patter, despite the fact that John did as much during real Beatles shows. No one ever does the “rattle your jewelry” line–what a missed opportunity![/ul]Rain does a terrific job, I thought. If you can have fun a such a show (I certainly can :)), you should enjoy this one. I know, I know, they’re not the Beatles, but there are moments in the show where you get goosebumps pretending, and it’s fun all around.

Now I’m interested in hearing your ratings of other Beatles tribute bands, Stratocaster. I went to a free concert by American English a couple of years ago and quite enjoyed it.

[quote=“Stratocaster, post:4, topic:523509”]

[ul][li]For some reason, most of the Beatles tribute bands I’ve seen have Paul doing most of the between-song patter, despite the fact that John did as much during real Beatles shows. No one ever does the “rattle your jewelry” line–what a missed opportunity![/ul][/li][/QUOTE]

Aw, that’s too bad. John’s on-stage wackiness is one of the best things about live Beatles videos.

Yeah, I’m considering watching without my glasses. :smiley:

I noticed on the PBS show that Paul was right-handed, but I didn’t let it interfere with my enjoyment; the vocals, especially Paul, were as authentic-sounding as one could hope for.

The show isn’t until March; I’ll be sure and post back afterwards.

The Wikipedia article on tribute bands pointed out how big they are in Australia, mostly due to the remoteness of the country, and how few performers tour there. I’ve only seen a few - the Genesis band “The Musical Box”, a Kansas City U2 tribute band and a couple of others. It seems worthwhile, especially in situations where the original members are no longer alive, no longer touring or just plain not interested in their old songs.

I went to see a Beatles tribute band named Penny Lane; it was over 20 years ago, and I thought it was going to be just silly and ridiculous, as I didn’t really even care about the Beatles THAT much anyway.

Um…it was amazing how much the audience went nuts. I totally caught the fever, for the extent of the show and for a couple of hours afterwards, even!

It was an experience, for sure. I don’t know if I’m embarassed about it or not; I grew up with everyone playing music and I’m not ‘impressed’ by either talent or popularity, so…I have no idea why I got into the show just like every other idiot there. =p (I know, I know, crowds make their own weather, I get it…it’s still very strange to be overwhelmed by it, rofl)

I saw Rain several years ago. They were quite good. As noted above, it doesn’t hurt to have an enthusiastic audience.

The Aussie Pink Floyd has enjoyed international success, and rightly so.

That is one I’ve heard of, that play Kansas City pretty regularly. Given the seemingly intractable personal differences between Waters and Gilmour (that can be put aside for a single benefit concert) they’ll never tour again. So why not see their music played well by talented musicians? Besides, few people are going to be able to afford tickets that will get them close enough to tell the difference if they did tour.

One of the bands I played in, tried The Beatles tribute thing, but it was a freakin’
disaster!

None of us looked like who we were supposed to be (although we could play the music), and my damn “nose” kept falling off, due to me sweating so profusely.

Mixed emotions about the Aussie Floyds though, guys.

Maybe it’s my age, but if any of them were still around, I’d rather hear them instead.

(I can hear y’all already: “Well, duh, Quasi!” :D)

There’s also an Australian Beatles Tribute band.

This is them: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3WfoccRna6I

Thanks

Quasi

I’m a huge fan of Kate Bush, and I’ve never seen her preform live - she only toured once, in 1978. I’ve heard her sing live, acapella, at a fan convention and met her a few times and talked to her on the phone. But if I want to hear an evening of Kate Bush music, I’m going to have to rely on the tribute bands that have formed to play her music. They are in two categories - the type that tries to do all the theatrical parts with costumes, and the type that just play the music. I prefer the latter, as she is genuinely inimitable.

Sadly, all of them are in the UK and Europe and have not come to the US, although I think one might be successful touring the US.

I don’t think that’s true. Everyone we want to see tours here. But we have a long tradition of pubs featuring Aussie Tribute Bands because musos like to eat, drink and pay their mortgage. Some are pretty damn good.

I’ve never seen a list of US tribute acts anywhere near that extensive. Here in Chicago, there might be a handful of tribute bands performing in bars any given weekend, a few big tribute acts touring, but seriously - that really does look like a major thing there.

My daughters are “groupies,” to the extent that they go to many of their concerts and know the members. Enough so that, while eating at a restaurant, “John” came over and said hello. And I think it was “George” who married the cousin of another daughter’s friend, so they are practically family. (No, I don’t keep track of my real family significantly better than that.)

I’m not into tribute bands, though I have a friend who has been in both a Kiss and and a Cheap Trick tribute, but American English does a good job.

I saw Rain when they came to my town twenty-some years ago ('87 or '88, I think). I was really into The Beatles, but far too young to have ever heard them - I think they did their last live concert the same year I was born, 1966. Anyway, I was completely blown away by how accurately they reproduced the music. I’m pretty sure Paul was left-handed when I saw them, and John did most of the patter.

Oddly enough, though, my most distinct memory of the show was the opening act’s response to a heckler. The opening act was a solo singer/guitarist whose name I can’t recall, but he was a former member of the New Christy Minstrels. It’s important to note that he was about seven feet tall and 300 pounds of spring steel and rawhide. Between a couple of his songs, some wiseass in the audience yelled at him, “Are you gay?” and he replied, “You’d better hope I’m not, cuz if I wanna, you’re gonna!” :smiley:

Never saw American English. I did see Beatlemania, the grandfather of them all, back in its initial run (meaning, after the touring company came to Philly). Quite enjoyed it, and I believe they created the basic tribute template (the sequence of costume changes, the sets, the use of video with the “lads” playing out scenes we’d all become familiar with, like press conferences and getting off the plane at JFK).

Most recently saw Beatlemania Now, whose website would lead you to believe they are the heirs of that original show’s legacy (but I don’t think so). They were okay, professional, with the standard costume changes. I haven’t checked, but this performance led me to think the tribute space is a pretty incestuous one, since I thought I recognized one or two of the performers from other tribute bands.

We used to go see a band called Jasper, back in the day, at the Quart Room in Wildwood. They were Bealtes nuts too, and for some shows did a quasi-tribute, with at least a couple of costume changes. Musically they were very good, and the shows were fun, though with less detail and “Broadway polish.”

I’ve seen The British Invasion countless times at Disney World, though they definitely have a revolving line-up (which sucked the last time we saw them).

That’s off the top of my head, not counting the countless non-stage (think bar) shows of local, really-small-potato tribute bands–much less polish, including musically, often with moth-eaten costumes and ill-fitting wigs. (As I mentioned, it’s a character defect, but I enjoy those shows too, if only to make snide remarks within our group.)

I saw Rain a few years ago and thought they were very good. The most interesting part for me was the later stuff – getting a glimpse of what it would have been like if the Beatles had continued touring after 1966.

And I concur with other posters that, when you go to see a tribute band, you shouldn’t sit too close – it ruins the effect (unless you have bad eyesight).

I’ll second this. My wife and I saw Rain a couple years ago and it was a good show. My only complaint was more about the staging and presentation than the music. They played behind the proscenium at our local venue(a big barn basically) and it looked more like watching people on TV than going to a concert. I’m not sure if that was intentional(because most people’s memories of the Beatles would be from videos/tv) or if they only have a certain set-up they use. If they had been fifteen feet further downstage it would have felt much more like a concert versus a show, and we had good seats(~14th row). If we had been standing instead of sitting that may have made a difference too. Overall I don’t regret going, but I’m skipping the opportunity to get tickets when they come back through this year.

I’m not really a Beatles fan though, so this is from the POV of someone who is Beatles agnostic. I like some of their stuff, but I’ve never sat and listened to a full album of theirs, or tried to play/sing their work like I have with some others.

Enjoy,
Steven