Audience experiences noteworthy flashback

January 09, 2011|By DAVE McMILLION |
  • The Flashbacks of Berkeley Springs, W.Va., perform Sunday at the Barbara Ingram School for the Arts as part of Noteworthy Sundays @ Your Library, presented by the Washington County Free Library.
By Joe Crocetta/Staff Photographer


More than 70 people on Sunday found themselves at a point in time when rock ’n’ roll was arriving in the United States.

The performers at the time included artists like Bill Haley, Jerry Lee Lewis and Buddy Holly, and their influence was spread in part through appearances on television shows like “The Ed Sullivan Show” and “The Steve Allen Show.”

The sound was re-created Sunday when a Berkeley Springs, W.Va.-based band known as The Flashbacks appeared at the Barbara Ingram School for the Arts on South Potomac Street.

The show was the fifth in an eight-part series known as Noteworthy Sundays @ Your Library, presented by the Washington County Free Library. Because the library is closed due to an expansion, the free show was held at the school.

The five-piece band took the stage in the school’s Black Box Theater at 3 p.m., delivering songs from artists like Haley, Lewis, Holly, Roy Orbison, The Beatles and the Rolling Stones.

Gordon MacLeod, one of the group’s guitar players, commented on the group’s different surroundings, saying the musicians usually find themselves in more smoky environments.

Bass player Jonathan McBee joked after the show about a honky-tonk at which the band plays.
McBee said the bar has two sections, “smoking and chain smoking.”

“We’re not serving drinks. I tried to get that in the contract,” MacLeod told the crowd before the band started a set.

The group performed songs like Lewis’ “Great Balls of Fire,” Holly’s “It’s So Easy to Fall in Love,” Orbison’s “Only the Lonely,” Haley’s “Rock around the Clock” and “All My Loving” by The Beatles.

The crowd clapped its hands to the beat at times, and some spectators closed their eyes and smiled as they listened, as if they were reliving a moment.

“I see a lot of foot tapping out there. Too bad we don’t have a dance floor,” said band member Angela Petry, a singer who also picked up a tambourine and a fiddle during the show.

“I love it. They took me back to songs I haven’t heard in 35 to 40 years,” Hagerstown resident Walter Bell said after the performance.

Bell said he does not know of any other groups playing that style of music.

“I’d go see them again,” said spectator Rich Nemchik.

Pat Wishard, spokeswoman for the Washington County Free Library, said Noteworthy Sundays @ Your Library has been offered for several years. The free shows are part of the library’s mission to educate people about different musical styles, Wishard said.

On Jan. 22, The Flashbacks and other groups are scheduled to perform for a fundraiser for CASA Inc. at the Apollo Civic Theatre in Martinsburg, W.Va., McBee said.

CASA is a Hagerstown organization that provides professional support services to people who have experienced domestic violence, sexual assault and abuse, and rape.

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