Saturday, June 18, 2016

Make My Wish Come True

Frankie Avalon
Lewis Family Playhouse
Friday, June 3, 2016
Rrrrancho Cucamonga, CA

Remember when my friends and I took a road trip to Reno and on the way home, Cindy asked if Steve Dorian would sing "Venus" at our house concert?  Remember when he actually did? Then an amazing thing happened:  Frankie Avalon got booked to sing at one of our favorite venues, the Lewis Family Playhouse.  It was destiny.  We HAD to go!!!  

Linda picked me up after work, then we picked up Cindy and drove to Rrrrancho Cucamonga.  We arrived pretty early, so we ate dinner at Lucille's.  Awww, memories of secret stuff that happened that really isn't that much of a secret anymore but this is a really long sentence, isn't it?  The food was yummy.  Cindy was going to take some of hers home, but we weren't sure if the venue would allow us to take the container into the theater, and we didn't have time to take it to the car, so she left it there.  That's a shame, because she said it was good.

Our seats were in the back row of the front orchestra section, smack dab in the center.  Thank you for getting us such awesome seats, Wendy!  My ticket was her birthday gift to me.  :)

As the theater went dark, we were treated to some scenes from Frankie Avalon's film career.  The band started to play, and I thought the drummer looked a lot like Frankie.  Then FA himself took the stage.  

I didn't write notes during the show, so this set list is from our memory, and is probably incomplete.

Beach Blanket Bingo 
Medley of Beach Blanket films

  • We were shown snippets of each Beach Blanket film, with a special mention for Annette Funicello.

Beauty School Dropout

  • I cried.  I couldn't believe that I was actually seeing Grease's Teen Angel sing this song in person!
The drummer turned out to be Frankie's eldest child, Frank.  He grew up with KISS as his influence.  Frankie kept showing us his impersonation of Gene Simmons and the tongue.  Frank had a drum solo later, and it was quite impressive.

Bobby Socks to Stockings
  • This had me squealing like a teenager in the 60s...but maybe not that loud.  I was SO excited as soon as I heard the intro, and said, "CINDY!"  I was so wishing that Steve was there to witness it with us.  Frankie Avalon, singing his signature song, LIVE.  My heart was happy!
Doo Wop medley
  • Including Earth Angel, You Send Me, and Goodnight Sweetheart

The guitar player was Don Everly's son, Edan.  Yes, of the Everly Brothers!  Frankie sang a medley of Everly Bros songs with him, with Edan singing his Uncle Phil's part (harmony).

Everly Brothers medley
  • Bye Bye Love
  • All I Have To Do Is Dream
  • Wake Up Little Susie

Yakety Yak
Witch Doctor
Good Old Days 
  • Written by a couple of kids that sang for Frankie after a show.
The Brady Bunch
  • Frankie said, "Remember that show 'Eight is Enough'?  Eight is a LOT."  He and his wife had 8 kids within a span of 10 years.  He showed video that Frank Jr. edited that showed each child after they were born, interspersed with pictures of Frankie's wife, pregnant with another child, in the same maternity dress. Frank, Jr. had Tiger Drums.  Linda wants them.
Tribute to Frankie's friends
  • Ricky Nelson (we can't remember what song he sang)
  • Elvis, whom had to have lunch with him in his trailer because they couldn't leave the lot due to his popularity - Jailhouse Rock and Blue Suede Shoes
  • Bobby Darrin (his NYC roommate) -- Mack the Knife
  • Bill Haley (with whom he also toured)-- Rock Around the Clock

Frankie closed with his favorite saying: "If you feel like you're at the end of your rope, hold on tight and hang on."

The show was lots of fun!  A girl in front of us kept turning to watch me and Linda.  APPARENTLY, we were quite entertaining.  Her parents explained to us later that she has autism and really enjoyed seeing us.  Aw, sweet.  We are a sight to behold!

Afterward, we got in line to meet Frank, Jr. and Edan.  Frank talked to Cindy about their hair and his curls.  I told Edan that my college roommate and I used to sing his dad's songs all of the time, with me singing the harmony.  He asked me to sing with him, but not an Everly song.   He asked me to sing "Amazing Grace", then he was impressed and told me, "You're in the band."  OKAY!!!  We took pictures with them and they signed our CDs.

Frank, the Girls, and Edan

That was a lot of fun!  The whole "Venus" thing has gone full orbit, and we were happily pleased.

Thank you for a great night, Cindy and Linda! 

No comments:

Post a Comment