Beatlemaniacs take over Wallingford’s Toyota Oakdale Theater for ‘Fab 4 Music Festival’
Beatles fans will “Come Together” this weekend for the “Fab 4 Music Festival” in Wallingford.
The festival, taking place at the Toyota Oakdale Theater, features memorabilia vendors, food trucks and 20 tribute bands, including Mystery Tour, Penny Lane and The Hofners.
Drummer Mike “Ringo” Streeto, who founded the Hofners, shared more via email. He said there are many Beatles’ tribute bands, some are named after songs and films, while others are just named for where they come from, like the Norwegian Beatles.
“There’s even a group in Tokyo called the Japanese Beetles, which is rather funny,” said Hofner, of Branford. “We named ourselves The Hofners after Paul McCartney’s bass guitar. ... Fans who know trivia about the Beatles and their instruments always get it. Paul loves his Hofner, and I think fans will love The Hofners.”
Q: Can you tell us some more about your band?
A: Dane Bramage is our Paul. He is a left-handed bassist just like Paul. Born in Greenwich, he now lives in West Haven. Michael Montinola is our lead guitarist, keyboardist and our George (Harrison). He is originally from the Philippines, where the Beatles toured, and currently hails from Naugatuck. Marty McGowan is our rhythm guitarist and our John Lennon. The only non-Connecticut member of the band, Marty treks to gigs from Pennsylvania.
Q: How long have you been performing together?
A: The Hofners have been together four years. ... Although playing the “Fab 4 Music Festival” is always the most fun because we’re playing in front of true fans; we recently had the honor ... of playing a showcase at New York’s famous Friars Club, as well as a very exclusive gig on Broadway where we performed a benefit for FIT (Fashion Institute of Technology).
Q: What makes the Hofners click?
A: It’s our mutual love of the music, but it’s also a deep respect for (the Beatles’) musicianship, harmonies and song structure. Perhaps we also click because we’re perfectionists. We’re always studying not just the recordings, but also videos to improve our accents and mannerisms.
Q: What can the audience expect at this festival?
A: The Hofners were originally a Beatles’ tribute (band) that specialized in the early years. ... As such, audiences were accustomed to seeing us play note-for-note sets of “Ed Sullivan Show” material, or a recreation of the Beatles’ Shea Stadium concert or entire soundtracks from the “A Hard Day’s Night” and “Help!” movies. For 2017, however, we felt we needed to celebrate the 50th anniversary of “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band,” so we will be performing the classic album — in replica “Pepper” suits.
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The Hofners on Broadway: bit.ly/2ph7Q9N