Greg Brady and the BeeGees

by Ted Holteen

Call it hyperbole, but hear me out. Today, Jan. 19, Durango welcomes one of the single most famous people in America. We’re talking full-on icon here. Think quickly – name a handful of people whose name would garner recognition from nine of every 10 Americans on the street at any given time: The President, Michael Jackson maybe, Muhammad Ali probably, and the list gets leaner from there. Britney Spears? Nelly? Unknown to most folks over 40. Walter Cronkite? Lucille Ball? Same thing, under 40. But say the name “Greg Brady,” and I’d be shocked if even your out of touch grandma in Kansas would draw a blank. For thanks to the magic of syndication, generations from The Greatest (copyright 1998, Tom Brokaw) to X and beyond have been inexplicably but inexorably impacted by the man who will forever be synonymous with male adolescence in the U.S.A. As for the female equivalent, Maureen McCormick, aka Marcia Brady, screw her. She’s not coming to Durango today. But Greg, I mean Barry Williams, is in town, and if you miss this tremendous photo-op, you’ll regret it the rest of your life. Seriously. I have a friend who has what I think is the single coolest thing hanging on any wall in any house, anywhere. It’s a picture of him and the late great Bob Hope, who would have made the above list were he still among the living. The photo is irreplaceable, unique and would’ve gotten Mikey arrested had Bob been on the ball that day. He ran up behind the old man during a golf tournament, threw the camera to a passerby, and the rest is, literally, history. Imagine yourself in a similar frame with Barry/Greg. Conversation piece doesn’t begin to describe such a keepsake. Now stop imagining and hurry to the FLC Community Concert Hall, where for some reason he’ll be performing at the Durango Chamber of Commerce Awards Ceremony starting at 5 p.m. today. Greg/Barry’s presence turns an otherwise intolerable three hours into the can’t-miss event of ’06. (Hey, the year is young.)

Now if you think that the Concert Hall is finished with the ’70s retro thing after just a cameo from Barry Williams, not only do you think about really strange things, but you’re also wrong. As I warned you recently, the Snowdown theme this year is disco, and if there was one band who provided the soundtrack to that nightmarish era it was the BeeGees. As that trio is now a duo and likely very expensive at that, Durango gets the next best thing, relatively speaking. On Saturday, the Concert Hall presents “Stayin’ Alive: A Tribute to the BeeGees and ’70s Disco.” It’s a multimedia situation, with a BeeGees cover band fronting the big screen backdrop where period shots will fly by showing weirdos dancing and breaking laws both natural and codified and a whole bunch of lights and music and man, it’ll be weird. At least I think it’ll be weird – how could it not be? The show starts at 7 p.m., and between the Barry Williams thing and this, it might be a good idea to get to the box office sooner rather than later.

Before I get ahead of myself, I must back up to Thursday, Jan. 19, for another of those movies that you really should see but you only have one chance to do so. In this case, filmmaker Keya Lea Horiuchi, a Fort Lewis graduate, traveled the world to find out how much everyone hates us and shows the results in her film “Growing Democracy.” I love the concept. Many of us in the know have been griping for years that, in addition to the tangible atrocities being piled up by the current administration, the United States has gotten a black eye, a fat lip and a bloody nose in the global court of public opinion. In other words, the world thinks we’re nuts. Having not seen Keya’s film, I’m guessing that the interviews covering topics like health care, foreign policy, our media and democracy reinforce that position. This is, after all, the country where Greg Brady is more famous than Kofi Annan. Way more famous. And unlike that sonofabitch George Lucas, who was nowhere to be found when I wanted to kick him in the ribs after he dumped his latest Star Wars teen angst serial drama on us last summer, Keya will be on hand before and after the film to answer questions and talk about the experience of undertaking such a project. Your one chance to see this revealing look at yourself and your country is tonight at 8:30 p.m. at the Abbey Theatre. Don’t blow it.

In a week that includes the aforementioned superstar and super show, traditional live music may seem a bit tame in comparison. So my advice is to stop comparing and enjoy the music for what it is. And there’s some good stuff to be had. While snow may be hard to come by at local ski areas, vacationing Texans and locals alike can find an entertaining diversion with one of the Lone Star State’s newest sensations, Spur 503, playing Friday at Purgy’s. That’s the bar that would be at the base area if the base hadn’t been relocated to the midway point of Chair 8 due to lack of the white stuff. Spur 503 does the Texas country/Western Swing/ Southern Rock thing very well and should make for great après mudslide entertainment at our favorite year-round resort. I hear they have an Alpine Slide.

The slate’s full in town, too. Friday at the Summit, HotMops take the stage with new songs and an energy boost that could only come from a scintillating and unforgettable performance at last week’s Elvis Night. They were great. And the Abbey would seem to be back in the music biz full swing, with live shows Friday and Saturday. On Friday, it’s bluegrass with the Badly Bent and Down the Road, a band featuring not only the incomparable enigma that is Hugh Felt, but another Elvis Night alum who brought down the house, Dave Sime. He was great, too. Just remember, when the people in that America-hating movie talk about hating Americans, they are NOT talking about Hugh Felt. They’re talking about Liggett, who will surely be found at the Abbey the following night, Saturday, to see the all-new Vince Herman Trio with special guests The Wayword Sons. Vince, of course, is best known for founding and leading Leftover Salmon for all those years, and is now touring with Cliff Starbuck and Randy Croush, which, when taken in sum, forms a trio. The Sons are built on the foundation of songwriter Benny Galloway, who by the end of this year may well be more famous than the evening’s headliner. This is a Durango Acoustic Music production, so don’t snooze on tickets as DAM members tend to snag them up as quickly as they’re printed.

Did I mention I take bribes? Make me an offer. I think I need to change my Super Bowl pick again. •



In this week's issue...

January 25, 2024
Bagging it

State plastic bag ban is in full effect, but enforcement varies

January 26, 2024
Paper chase

The Sneer is back – and no we’re not talking about Billy Idol’s comeback tour.

January 11, 2024
High and dry

New state climate report projects continued warming, declining streamflows