Welcome to the Regal Tones Reunion Gig Reviews page!! Here I'll be gathering together all the Reunion-related gig reviews, reports, images, clips - in fact, anything and everything that I've been sent to date.
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Just got back home from the Regal Reunion. The show was beyond awesome. Great set lists, a packed house with over half the town attending.
For a few photos check out: this link.
Here's the run down. Was it taped? Yes. The venue was a hockey arena so it isn't the optimum sound, but the crowd was so rabid that any sonic deficiencies are covered by everyone singing along to every song. Not to mention the Twist contest!
Regal Tones Set Lists:
The Regaltones show was amazing, one of the best shows any of us has played. It was a lot of hard work getting ready for the shows, a lot of research, planning and rehearsal but it paid off
Some photos of the Regaltones show are available here.
From BOC-L Lists: Fri, 28 Jul 2006
3 hours before the show I was sitting in a restaurant's patio dining space with my parents. The table to the right of us had five people gathered 'round it, deep in reminiscing-mode about the bands they saw in high school. My ears zoomed in like radar as soon as I heard the words "Albert" "Elks Club" "Joe" "Regal-Tones" became a part of the dialogue. That was really cool, im my mind, 'cause the where/when of my youth didn't have anything similar besides CDs and LPS of strangely named groups like BOC, Popol Vuh, Procol Harum, and the like.
Appreciating Albert and Joe's musical efforts was always a game of 'catch-up' or, in the case of the Brain Surgeons, something like commuting. I have to come out of the capital district 'burbs to the big city of NYC on my ownsome.
But the Regal-Tones,by way of this eaves-dropped conversation, made what I love (music) have a context in which said passion could be at ease. Or in the lingo of the spirit of the age, it was 'A Happening'.
The Barn Dance was just that. History and the present merrily dropped their temporal facaded to BOOGIE ON DOWN.
Some faces familiar to me from the crowd at BOC/tBS shows were in attendance, as was Deborah Frost. 'Twas good to catch up with Albert and Deb in the pre-show glow of anticipation. As Albert said, "It's gonna be a wild night," and boy was he right.
An opening band played a satisfying brace of Cajun-inflected Blues, like "Caledonia," to a small but dancing group of women and men on the dance floor. A good omen!
Punctually, the Regal Tones took to the stage, ready for battle with Pendleton-styled, buttoned short sleeve shirts.
Joe predominantly played keyboard, alternating to the guitar as needed by the song. More importantly, he acted as the impresario for the night. His command of the stage impressed me immensely, as I've only watched Joe in action at the Billy Hilfiger Memorial Show.
Maybe it was the setting and show type (that was more of a 'festival' of different acts), but I think having a proper band and set for the entire night gave Joe the chance to charm the audience with his song introductions and tales of Regal Glory.
This is the best guess at the set. In my mind, it fell together thematically. True to the times in which the found inspiration, they played several instrumentals: "Sleepwalk," "Walk, Don't Run," "Tequila," "Raunchy," and "Green Onions."
What impressed me 'bout these was how well the two guitarist sounded in unison. The sax in "Raunchy," too, had an appealing force to it. Excellent. Albert's faithful atomic-clock-backbeat in :Green Onions" made time tight.
The songs with words were many and they were raucous. "Louie, Louie" was happily performed with Albert steppin' out on lead guitar and vocals while the band's other guitarist manned the drummer's stool. Very cool.
"Bonie Maroney" (is that spelling right?) had Albert on lead vocals while drumming, too. The first set's undisputable highlight, WITHOUT A DOUBT, was the band's run through "What'd I Say (parts 1 and 2)." The Crowd danced and moaned itself into the rock'n'roll moment.
On the stage, Joe's riffage on the 88s was worthy of Ray and Albert swung a Big, Bad Beat. In the latter third of the set was the group's Beach Boys trilogy. Joe's explanation of diggin' the similarity in their personell to the Regal Tones (brothers and cousins), mutual enjoyment of rock and roll, and affection for the warm Clayton sun helped me see why the 'Tones popped some Surf into their sets.
They played "Californian Girls" (with the symphonic intro done on guitar!), "Surfing, USA", and a song about T-birds. (I should know the name of this song! Argh!
Alas, I've never been a Beach Boys fan. That came in handy, since I took the time to be merciful to myself by resting for Act Two). Also in the tumult the Immortal "Johnny B Goode" made an appaearance. Joe definitely played the guitar like he was ringin' a bell. Oh Yeah! And earlier in the set, he also gave The Killer's"Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin On" that wasn't fakin' at all.
By the way, they closed the first set with "Burning For You." It was TIGHT and heavy and poppy and great. I can now say I've heard all the members of BOC play the Big 3 live, in one configuration or another. The crowd's on flame with rock and roll and Joe's fretwork adds fuel to the fire during that gem of a song. The song bounced with attitude I've missed in other live attempts.
I had sweat away several pounds of life by the time they took a bow after "Burning For You." In the interim, it stuck me that the crowd gathered at the front of the stage might well have been the entire arena. It was huge. All were extremely pleased and guzzling the myriad liquid refreshments on offer.
The short respite ended when we entered "the Black and White Set" --- The Regal Tones were refreshed and sporting thin black ties, white button down shirts, black pants and shoes. Wasting no time, they launched into a full-fledged Beatles onslaught.
I've always been lukewarm when it came to John, Paul ,George and Ringo's output. Years of FM over-exposure, overly-rabid adulation and too many incomprehensible pop crimes in their solo careers left me only with a respect for their 'contribution to rock'n'roll.
Tonight, all that changed.
Like the first set, I cannot remember all the songs performed. I know "Daytripper" (woohoo!), " We Can Work It Out", "The Night Before", "Help!" (and it came down heavy and fast, outrocking the studio track 1000 to 1), "Twist and Shout", "Love Me Do" (Albert on harmonica and drums simultaneously. Very tough!), "Things We Said Yesterday", "A Hard Days Night" -- complete with the cool opening wash of feedback and the nifty guitar fadeout were standouts in memory and at the time, There were at least four more tunes, each as cool as the rest.
The British Invasion continued and the audience joyfully surrendered to the Big British Beat as Albert delivered those that pre-break drum fill in "For Your Love," as well as the snappy snare drum rat-a-tat in "You Really Got Me." "Secret Agent Man" and "Hang on Sloopy" followed up the rear in all their rockin' majesty.
You might be asking, "...But what of the Stones, J? What of the Stones?" Fear not, for two of their many 45s were played -- my paradigm for what a guitar can do, "The Last Time", sent me into a frenzy as it should rightly do. Its ugly twin brother, "Satisfaction" included a hummingbird-speed bass drum fill by Monsieur Bouchard made their bad selves present at the Dance.
As they did with Set One, Set Two concluded with Spectres' resident monster. Tonight, "Godzilla" wore a thin black tie,"Topsy (Part Two))"s drum solo, and the usual percussive excellence we know radioactive lizard masks can bestow upon their wearer (or something like that). Although closing with 'zilla.. the crowd called out for more.
"(Don't Fear) The Reaper" was our present for finding and creating the night's vibes. 'Twas an old friend this song, still in good shape and displaying all the signs of a well-earned classic status. Unlike the usual BOC shows, the Big 3's presence was not expected, but they were very welcome. I think they sound better without expecting 'em.
There was one other song I don't know. They specifically played it for the woman who organized the whole shebang. She and her husband joined the 'Tones on stage with merry abandon.
After encore two ("Satisfaction"), the song to end all encores hit the stage,"Good Night Sweetheart, Good Night." Their a capella version bade us fare well, as tradition commanded, and the assembled mass staggered home, exhausted from the groove. Rightly so, the band's final bows were like the embrace given by civilians to GIs on VE and VJ Day.
To put it all another way: tonight was the first time my parents and I enjoyed the same concert.
One for the books, indeed.
The show was great! It was a different format than last year in with 9 opening acts competing in a Battle of the Bands. The audience was a wide range of people from teens to middle agers like us.
I was concerned how it would all work out because those things can turn into a staging nightmare. But all the bands played on time and were very respectful of their opportunity to be a part of this event. All the bands were great, with many young musicians still in their teens and then there were several veterans our age. The winning band was a hard rocking group of young studs, Minus Mike from Clayton our hometown, who played the highest energy rockin set.
Okay, here's the set list:
34 songs altogether. We cut down the set from last years 50 or so songs, but we didn't take an intermission and we added a few new numbers that garnered a great response.
Most likely the Regal Tones will rise again. When I looked across the stage at the band, there were the same guys I played with over 40 years ago and we're still as evergetic and youthful as we were back then. (We actually rehearsed all week again! It's amazing what that can do.) We are all blessed with great health and vitality for a bunch of old geezers.
Also I must add I played the best game of golf I ever played. I got a Birdie on the fourth hole of the Wellesley Island State Park course. I was dancing around like an idiot, but it was worth it.
Here's a youTube clip of "Walk Don't Run", the Ventures cover, from this gig: