All-star tribute to Beatles’ ‘White Album’ with Todd Rundgren, Christopher Cross, and more comes to Bethlehem on Sept. 19
From a press release:
An all-star lineup of famous musicians – Todd Rundgren, Christopher Cross, Micky Dolenz (The Monkees), Jason Scheff (Chicago), and Joey Molland (Badfinger) – will embark on the “It Was 50 Years Ago Today” Tour this fall, a tribute to the “White Album” by The Beatles.
Performing their own greatest hits along with songs from The Beatles’ 1968 double album, the supergroup will perform at the Sands Bethlehem Event Center on Thursday, Sept. 19 at 7:30 p.m.
Tickets, which are $45, $59, and $69.50, plus applicable fees, go on sale this Friday, June 21 at 10 a.m. and can be purchased at sandseventcenter.com, the Event Center box office (77 Sands Blvd., Bethlehem), ticketmaster.com, all Ticketmaster outlets, or by phone at 800-745-3000. A pre-sale for members of the venue’s Music Insiders Club will take place on Thursday, June 20 from 10 a.m.-10 p.m.
As Andy Greene of Rolling Stone noted, “The fine print on the tour poster reads ‘not affiliated or endorsed by the Beatles individually or collectively,’ but many of the artists on the bill do have Beatle connections. Badfinger was the first band the Beatles signed to their label Apple in 1968, and members of the group played on the sessions for John Lennon’s ‘Imagine’ and George Harrison’s ‘All Things Must Pass.’ The group also performed at the Concert for Bangladesh alongside Harrison and Ringo Starr. Todd Rundgren, meanwhile, has been a mainstay in Ringo Starr’s All Starr Band going all the way back to 1989 and as recently as 2017. Micky Dolenz befriended The Beatles during his days in The Monkees and was in Abbey Road Studios when they recorded ‘Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.'”
“The Beatles,” also known as the “White Album,” is the ninth studio album by one of the most influential bands of all time, released on Nov. 22, 1968. A double album, its plain white sleeve has no graphics or text other than the band’s name embossed, which was intended as a direct contrast to the vivid cover artwork of the band’s previous LP, “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.”
Although no singles were issued from The Beatles in Britain and the United States, the songs “Hey Jude” and “Revolution” originated from the same recording sessions and were issued on a single in August of 1968. The album’s songs range in style from British blues and ska to pastiches of Chuck Berry and Karlheinz Stockhausen.
Most of the songs on the album were written during March and April of 1968 at a Transcendental Meditation course in Rishikesh, India. The group returned to EMI’s Abbey Road Studios in London at the end of May to commence recording sessions that lasted through to mid-October. During these sessions, arguments broke out among the foursome over creative differences. Another divisive element was the constant presence of John Lennon’s new partner, Yoko Ono, whose attendance in the studio broke with The Beatles’ policy regarding wives and girlfriends not attending recording sessions. After a series of problems, including producer George Martin taking a sudden leave of absence and engineer Geoff Emerick quitting, Ringo Starr left the band briefly in August. The same tensions continued throughout the following year, leading to the breakup of the band by 1970.
On release, the self-titled album received favorable reviews from the majority of music critics, but other commentators found its satirical songs unimportant and apolitical amid the turbulent political and social climate of 1968. The band and Martin later debated whether the group should have released a single album instead. Nonetheless, “The Beatles” reached No. 1 on the charts in both the United Kingdom and the United States, and it has since been viewed by some critics as one of the greatest albums of all time.