One of North Myrtle Beach’s most famous, FREE, festivals featuring national entertainment; upscale vendors; a children’s area, arts and crafts and lots of fun. Always the Saturday before Mother’s Day, 11 South Ocean Blvd., North Myrtle Beach, S. C.
MAYFEST ON MAIN 2016
Take a trip down memory lane with MAYFEST ON MAIN 2016
ROSS CHILDRESS, CO-FOUNDER OF COLLECTIVE SOUL — 2016
Reflecting after driving through rush-hour traffic in Atlanta, Ross Childress said that hearing from fans of Collective Soul’s big run through the 1990s, he appreciates how such staples as “Shine,” “December,” “Where the River Flows” and “Listen” moved “various people with good memories.”
Childress said when he plays Collective Soul tunes in an acoustic setting, in some cases, a story gets told in the music, and “that definitely takes it back” to the vibe from their origins and that “it’s not like a scripted thing.”
Singing some of the band’s repertoire that resulted from the group’s founding in Stockbridge, near Atlanta, and having done lead guitar parts, Childress said he likes the “different dimension” the songs bring in performance, and “it’s a lot of words to remember.”
Childress said he sees fellow original bandmates “once in a while,” say at “a mutual friend’s CD release party.” Childress said that besides comic books, video games keep the kid in him alive, particularly Warcraft, and a spinoff, “Heroes of the Storm.” “Anytime I take a hour’s break from music,” he said, “that’s my entertainment.” Atlanta’s pro sports teams keep Childress’ attention, too, especially the Falcons. “I dig the time of year for football,” he said.
Asked what musical titans from his youth still impress him for always evolving and remaining relevant, generations later, Childress cited Elton John, “an amazing performer,” and Prince. “My first album was ‘Purple Rain,’” Childress said, on the day before the news broke of Prince’s passing, at age 57.
MOTHERS FINEST: REAPING THE REWARDS
THE LOAFER’S EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW
WITH JEFFREY ALAN PAYNE
WQUT’s Classic Rock,The Loafer, sat down for an exclusive interview with the venerable band’s founders: Glenn “Doc” Murdock and Joyce “Baby Jean” Kennedy. Here they talk about their many successes.
The Loafer: I want to ask you about some iconic bands you opened for. The Who was famous for hiring opening acts that were inappropriate for their audiences, and they would often get booed off the stage. You survived it.
Joyce “Baby Jean” Kennedy: Yeah, we probably got lucky. We survived it, but we were great though. This is not a big-headed statement, but we were great at what we did. When we walked on the stage, everything belonged to us. We didn’t care about the headliner. As far as we were concerned WE were the headliner. Greatness respects greatness. Those bands that knew exactly what they were, and that they were great at it, they opened the door for us to do our thing, because they wanted us to succeed. There was no competition there.
The Loafer: How about Aerosmith?
Kennedy: Aerosmith was lovely.
Glenn “Doc” Murdock: We played with them in Atlanta. They were tolerant, because they wouldn’t be shown up.
Kennedy: We also played in New York with them, and that was a completely different (than playing in hometown Atlanta).
Murdock: We had the same management company as them, and we were on the same label. They really didn’t want to be bothered with us; everyone just did their own thing. There was a progression of us playing with them.
Kennedy: It was a great combination; I’d have to say.
The Loafer: You’ve also mentioned ACDC.
MICKEY THOMAS – 2016
The leader in Starship– and a native of Cairo, Ga., just north of the Florida state line, near Tallahassee – has put his towering tenor behind such hits such as “Jane,” “No Way Out,” Sara,” “It’s Not Over (’Til It’s Over)” and “It’s Not Enough.”
“Rock of Ages,” on Broadway and later in cinema, included “We Built This City,” in which he and Grace Slick shared lead vocals in the mid-1980s, just as they did in recording “Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now” for the movie “Mannequin in 1987. Starship also supplied “Wild Again” for “Cocktail,” the Tom Cruise-Elisabeth Shue love story in 1988 packed with such blockbusters as “Kokomo” by the Beach Boys and “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” by Bobby McFerrin.
Before Thomas joined Starship in the late 1970s when the group’s name still started with Jefferson, he sung in Elvin Bishop’s band, taking the lead a few years earlier on “Fooled Around and Fell in Love,” for which he went to bat on the “Struttin’ My Stuff” album in 1975, with “a strong, good feeling.”
“There was something about it that was special,” Thomas said. “I insisted we record it, and it was the last track we recorded for the album. … It has stayed the test of time.”
“Fooled Around” made the “Guardians of the Galaxy: Awesome Mix Vol. 1” soundtrack from 2014, and Thomas counted off various movies to which the single added flavor, such as “Boogie Nights,” from 1997, and others with use “in an ironic sense,” as in “Summer of Sam” two years later.
Thomas said his son was 18 when seeing “Guardians,” and happy to tell friends about hearing his father’s voice on screen.
Seeing a gravitation toward “’80s music and classic rock” among the “younger generation” today, “it’s kind of like they’re becoming their own genre,” Thomas said.
“The kids I meet now in their 20s,” he said, “they know all the words to my favorite songs from the ’70s and ’80s.”
When running into actor Adam Sandler a few years ago at a Super Bowl, Thomas said he was thanked “for doing your part to keep the 1980s alive.”
Murdock: ACDC was almost counter-productive in that we could come and just take them up to a certain level, and ACDC would just take them over the top.
Kennedy: Yeah, the audience was TOTALLY exhausted. Again, they’re a great band, and they were not intimidated. We caught them on “Highway to Hell”, so they were just bustin’ out. We became great friends over the years. We played with Bad Company. The list is long. We’ve been around for a while.
The Loafer: After 47 years, you guys are edging into Rolling Stones-like musical veterans’ territory. Is it easier? Are you more confident? Let’s face it. We’re all getting older. Is it harder now to share that energy?
Kennedy: We’re kind of controlling it. It’s not harder. It’s just different, because the industry has changed so much. This is work, and to be honest, in the early days, we were on our way somewhere. So, every gig was like the first gig. We worked hard. We rehearsed hard, and we wrote songs.
Now, after 40-some years, we say, “Let’s try to stay tight and try to stay healthy, and try to keep a fresh perspective.” We know how the industry works now. You know, education is powerful. If you know the game, it changes your perspective on it. The band’s still tight. The last CD we did was excellent. The people who have it, love it. We try to keep the show fresh. That’s why we stay together. We love what we’ve done together, the work we’ve created.
We consider ourselves blessed. Nobody OD’d. We stay busy, and still have our audience. Booties are in the seats. We’re a rockin’ band. We play at nine-and-a-half all the time.
The Loafer: Speaking of that, your new album and single “Shut Up” simply sizzles, such a great song. Do you find that you have to tour to make money now, because everyone’s downloading music from the internet?
Murdock: What we try to do is….we ask people for money. Then, we give them stuff. They actually funded this last record. Then, we went to a record company over in Germany, and they gave us a little bit more money. But yeah, you do have to tour. It used to be that you didn’t put anything out on the internet, because you knew it was going to get stolen. The philosophy now is try to get the music to as many people as you can. Plus, get it to the people who are willing to pay for it, and do it all over again.
MAYFEST ON MAIN 2015
Go back in time to MAYFEST ON MAIN 2015
BARBARA LEWIS – 2015
A Carolina Beach Music Awards Hall of Fame inductee from 2003, Barbara Lewis wrote and recorded her debut hit, “Hello, Stranger,” in 1963. Two years later, “Baby, I’m Yours” – written by the late Van McCoy, maybe best known for his disco hit, “The Hustle” – made waves, and that resurfaced 30 years later, in the movie soundtrack “The Bridges of Madison County.”
“Puppy Love,” another self-penned song – separate from Paul Anka’s ditty of the same title also recorded by Donny Osmond – hit first in 1964, then got a second life in 1997 on the soundtrack for “Chasing Amy.”
Lewis said another hit from 1965, “Make Me Your Baby” probably is favorite to perform live. “It’s just a fun song to sing,” Lewis said.
Coming from a saxophone-playing mother and guitarist in a father, Lewis cultivated her Michigan farmstead origins during World War II into her own musical career.
She said she started composing “when I was 9 … little songs, you know?”
With other artists, including Motown acts in the 1960s, having covering her hit records, Lewis ranked Queen Latifah’s take on “Hello, Stranger,” from 2004 as the best, “a terrific job.”
Lewis, who stepped back from the music scene and dabbled in various other professions from the 1970s into the ’90s such as cashiering, selling crafts, nursing home care, and delivering newspapers and working as a security guard, later found a second wind on stage, rekindling oldies and memories for fans, a flame she keeps burning, at her pace.
Performing concerts across the country with other music stars who have made their mark in soul and pop circles, “I do a lot of oldies shows,” she said, hoping all fans who see her live “have good memories” of the hits.
GARRY PETERSON OF THE GUESS WHO — 2015
Garry Peterson, a singing drummer and one of two founding members of The Guess Who, a rock band with Canadian roots in Winnipeg, Manitoba, has lived in Greensboro, N.C., since 1991. He also knows the Grand Strand well through his escapes to his condo in Calabash.
The Guess Who, still with Jim Kale on bass and vocals, led a “Canadian Invasion” of pop rock with hits such as “These Eyes” in 1969 and starting the 1970s with two No. 1 singles: “American Woman,” and on the B-side of that 45-rpm single, “No Sugar Tonight/No Mother Nature.”
Peterson spoke about traveling this continent for 50 years, and how he has come to view the principles behind the U.S. Constitution and the work of this country’s Founding Fathers as honors that set a precedent for people. He also brought up how “we got through” political and social turbulence in the past, and that the United States “has accomplished such great things” overall, “where people came from all over” the world.
Looking at how The Guess Who – whose members once included Randy Bachman, who formed Bachman Turner Overdrive, and Burton Cummings, who went solo in 1975 – evolved and has kept it energy alight in concerts all these decades, Peterson thought back to the 1960s.
One of The Guess Who’s “biggest goals in life” was to build a base in bookings for concerts, and through that growth in popularity, Peterson said he gained a better perception “of where you come from, and where you end up.”
For that, he said, “you need a lot of help … and a lot of people to believe in you,” including record labels such as RCA into the 1970s, “radio to play your records, and press.”
He also stressed: “We come from the era where all the band mates contributed to these records.”
Counting 26 years in his first marriage and having tied the knot again in 1992, Peterson quipped, “I must like marriage, a great American pastime.” Peterson also loves how music stays tied to “special times in people’s lives,” for remembering that first first girl- or boyfriend, “the drive-in theater or a movie,” graduation, going steady, births, marriages, and deaths, “for any given family or individual with their events in their life.”