Beatles Tribute “Fab Four” to Play Cranston’s Park Theatre Nov. 16th

Award-Winning Band Coming to RI This Weekend

(Photo: Robert Kern)

Cold weather got you down? Sick of the snow already? Maybe what you need is a full dose of Beatles! The Fab Four has your prescription…

The award-winning Beatles tribute band is coming to Cranston’s Park Theatre Saturday November 16th. The California based group has been entertaining fans for over 20 years and even won an Emmy Award in 2013 for the PBS special “The Fab Four: The Ultimate Tribute.”

We spoke to Adam Hastings who plays John Lennon earlier this week, as he and the band prepared to resume their tour. The newest member of the group, Hastings is a talented musician and Lennon lookalike who formerly played in The Bootleg Beatles, another tribute band.

The Fab Four play around 100 shows a year, including a handful in Europe. Hastings explained,

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“We just headlined a show in August at the “International Beatles Week.” We all went over and enjoyed seeing the sites in Liverpool; it was really special for the American guys (in the band) who haven’t had much of a chance to get there. There were fans from all over the world. It seemed to go down really well, it was a nice experience, and I felt really good, going back to England with my new band.”

Hastings is a British native, but with American roots. “My Mums from Hartford, Connecticut, so I’ve always felt a bit like I’m home when I come to America. I love the enthusiasm of the American audience; it’s expressed in a much different way from the Europeans. We’re all there to celebrate that music together, everybody’s happy.”

No doubt, a Fab Four show is a celebration with the crowd joining in on most songs. We’re all Beatles fans in the band, if we were sitting in the audience, we’d be singing along too,” Hastings explained.

As Beatles fans know, the legendary band more or less stopped playing concerts by 1967. Many of their great albums, Abbey Road, Sgt. Pepper and The White Album, for example, were studio gems, but were never played live.

So how does a tribute band cover that material? Hastings offered some thoughts …

“They didn’t play them live, they only recorded them in the studio. Not only have you got to sing them, but you have to find a way of interpreting how they might have acted live at that time. They never did a live Sgt. Pepper so we look at what we can from studio footage or the Hello/Goodbye video. We have to find a way to put across not only the music, but what their live performance might have been at that time.

“With something like “Penny Lane,” with flute and brass all over the place, its just the four of us guys on stage, no secret tapes, that’s a different musical challenge and hopefully we go about it in an elegant way, where you still get the full picture of all the music and do justice to the original brilliance of the song.”

I asked Hastings which song gets the best response from audiences.

 “A Day in the Life,” when that comes off, when we do the build, the atmospheric stuff … some nights when you play it just right, I imagine that to be pretty impressive. We tend to get some standing ovations for that build up especially. It’s a great, crazy bit of music.”

Hastings is looking forward to the Park show and appreciates his role in the band.

“As I’m new to the band – I came over from England in March. I’d like to mention Ron (McNeil), Ardy (Sarraf), and Rolo (Sandoval), the original members, who not only play the Beatles music brilliantly, but also care about giving the audience the best show they can. I’m lucky that I get to come into something that they did so well. A lot of what the audience sees, is because of them, I happen to be the one on stage that gets to do it. I’m grateful to be part of it.”

The Fab Four take the Park Theatre stage at 8PM Saturday. You can expect to hear songs from throughout the Beatles songbook – and you can sing along all you like! Tickets are still available here.

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