‘Rain’ Beatles tribute at MPAC: Where the cheap seats are the best seats in the house

Rain performs Beatles tribute at the Mayo Performing Arts Center, which recorded its 75th sold out show of the season. Photo by Kevin Coughlin

CLOSE YOUR EYES AND I’LL KISS YOU…  Rain performs Beatles tribute at the Mayo Performing Arts Center, which recorded its 75th sold out show of the season. Photo by Kevin Coughlin

 

We live in an age of tribute bands–with the emphasis on age–and Morristown has seen some fine tributes to the most covered band of them all, the Beatles.

Rain, which visited the Mayo Performing Arts Center on Thursday, certainly ranks in the upper echelon.

Jimmy Irizarry, Paul Curatolo, Jimmy Pou, Ralph Castelli  and Chris Smallwood (standing in for the late Billy Preston) had the giant crowd–sellout No. 75 of the MPAC season–dancing in the aisles one night after the Real McCoy, er, McCartney, turned 72.

The vintage ’60s commercials were a hoot, too. Seeing Fred Flintstone and Barney Rubble puffing Winstons was priceless. And we had forgotten how a hit of Dristan was “like sending your sinuses to Arizona.”

Musically, the Rain men were versatile and their psychedelic video presentation was a fun diversion, which was a good thing. Because with all of these tribute shows, the illusion is spoiled if you look too closely.

At first blush, it appeared that “Paul” might be a girl and “Ringo,” an Eskimo.  (Not that there’s anything wrong with that.  The Eskimo Invasion produced some timeless hits. Personal favorite: I Am the Narwhal.)

In other words, the cheap seats were the best seats. You could pretend the balcony was the upper deck at Shea Stadium (R.I.P.) and those little mop tops  (real mops!) on stage were the Fab Four at second base.

Oh, wait a minute, the Fab Four are another group of Reasonable Facsimiles.

Hey, is that name available?  It’s high time the Rutles had a tribute show.

THOSE GUYS LOOK FAMILIAR...sort of. Rain at the Mayo Center. Photo by Kevin Coughlin

THOSE GUYS LOOK FAMILIAR…from a safe distance. Rain at the Mayo Center. Photo by Kevin Coughlin

SIR DOPPELGANGER: Paul Curatolo of Rain did something the real Sir Paul never did: He performed a couple of numbers right-handed. Photo by Kevin Coughlin

SIR DOPPELGANGER: Paul Curatolo of Rain did something the real Sir Paul never did: He performed a couple of numbers right-handed. And Jimmy Pou did something the real George Harrison never did: He played all three guitar leads on ‘The End.’ Photo by Kevin Coughlin

RAIN-MAKERS: Bud Mayo, left, namesake of the Mayo Performing Arts Center, and g.m. Ed Kirchdoerffer introduce Rain in Morristown. Photo by Kevin Coughlin

RAIN-MAKERS: Bud Mayo, left, namesake of the Mayo Performing Arts Center, and g.m. Ed Kirchdoerffer introduce Rain in Morristown. Photo by Kevin Coughlin

 

 

 



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