Hard day’s drive no barrier for ‘tragics’

IN true rock star fashion John Lennon (aka Scott McCarthy) and his Beatles cover band The Melbeats were more than an hour late to their gig at Albury’s Zed Bar last night.

But unlike rock stars past, it wasn’t groupies or drug-induced lethargy that kept them away.

“We had a few traffic problems,” McCarthy said.

McCarthy and his fellow band members — all Beatles “tragics” — kicked off the fourth annual Albury Beatles Festival, which will run until Sunday.

The band is one of the only Beatles cover outfits to use the exact model instruments and amplifiers Lennon, Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr and George Harrison did all those years ago.

“The diehards can definitely tell because we get lots of comments,” McCarthy said.

“If you use modern equipment you can’t get that sound.”

A packed Zed Bar crowd was treated to an extensive taste of the Beatles’ career as the Melbourne-based Melbeats played no fewer than 70 classics, starting with the early era and moving onto the middle era before playing each album from Sgt. Pepper’s to Abbey Road.

McCarthy said it was great seeing the enjoyment the music brought to the audience, especially the younger crowd.

“I think just about everyone knows a Beatles song,” he said.

“Their music is just applicable to all age groups.

“We get young people come in whose parents probably weren’t even born when the Beatles were playing.”

The festival continues tonight at the Albion Hotel.

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