Creedence Clearwater Revisited plays to packed house at Brighton Casino

OKEECHOBEE — Live at Brighton on Friday night, Jan. 22, 2016, Creedence Clearwater Revisited delivered that foot-stomping music, tear-bringing memories, and the true heartfelt connection as one of the premier classic rock bands.

The band.

The band.

This satisfaction and enjoyment is rarely achieved in this day and age.

Creedence Clearwater Revisited, however, does just that. Opening with the classic signature song, “Born on The Bayou,” and followed by the classic “Suzie-Q,” their performance to the sold-out audience at the Brighton Seminole venue was a perfect demonstration of their skills, tremendous passion, and their genuine love of their craft. The performance created that electric atmosphere that makes the live show a successful “classic.”

The band members encouraged the audience to “get down,” dance and “get right.” And it worked! Dancing in the aisles, clapping to the beat, and the audience’s standing ovations to the songs were the hallmark of the band’s appeal, and the unqualified success of the concert.

It became readily apparent that there is a tremendous interest in the original “CCR” music, and if you grew up and listened to “CCR,” you can just close your eyes and you will be “back in the day.” “Creedence Clearwater Revisited” does it with the style and technical performance standards that establishes the level that most of the other so-called “legendary artists and bands” cannot seem to duplicate.

For Credence Clearwater Revisited, it has been a labor of love, and a rarely seen attention to the details of the classic recordings from the original Creedence Clearwater Revival (CCR). The “Revival” is not a “here we go again” homage band, not at all. The backbone of the group is Stu Cook and Doug “Cosmo” Clifford who are the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame rhythm section (bass and drums respectively) of the legendary group Creedence Clearwater Revival.

Cook and Clifford

Cook and Clifford

As the original members of “CCR,” Stu Cook and Doug Clifford started the Revisited project in 1995. Following their induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, “Cosmo” Clifford and Stu Cook launched the project in 1995 with the goal to once again perform live concert the hit songs that are ageless touchstones of a generation.

World tours, and the platinum selling album Recollection in 2008 followed.

The astounding response to the band has been driven in part by a new generation of fans, that as Cosmo Clifford says, “Weren’t even born when the music came out.” As recently commented, it is the rhythm section’s Doug Clifford on the drums and Stu Cook’s bass that is the hallmark of Creedence Clearwater Revival.

Cook and Clifford did not take assembling the new group’s players lightly.
“In the beginning Cosmo and I decided that if we could find the musicians that could capture the sound and recreate what the music was about, we’d do it,” recalls Stu. As fans around the world can attest, and as evident at the Brighton concert performance, Stu and Cosmo found the right players.

Tristao

Tristao

The band’s lineup is impressive. The lead singer John Tristao, a powerful tenor with the classic CCR “voice,” has the energy and experience to duplicate the classic songs. Tristao initially rose to prominence as lead singer for the band People, and now successfully takes his skills to the band.

The newest touring member of Creedence Clearwater Revisited is lead guitarist Kurt Griffey. As a guitarist, song writer, producer and performer, Griffey has recorded and toured with notable musicians including members of the Eagles, Foreigner, the Moody Blues, Wings, Lynyrd Skynryd, Santana and Journey.

Wrapping up the lineup that Cook and Clifford have assembled, and, as a critical keystone that ties the group’s performance together, the talented multi-instrumentalist Steve Gunner rounds it out. As Cosmo puts it, “Gun provides live all the overdubs that were on the records with the keyboard, acoustic guitar, percussion, harmonica and the high harmonies.”

Griffey

Griffey

Since the group’s inception in the mid nineties, the reaction to Creedence Clearwater Revisited’s concerts has been an astounding success. The band now plays close to 100 shows a year in the United States, Canada and abroad.

The band’s appeal has spread internationally as they have performed for thousands of fans in Australia, New Zealand, Argentina, Chile, Brazil, Europe and Asia.

“We never really had any intention of playing for the public,” says Stu Cook. “We got talked into it, but didn’t know how it would go over.”

The release of the double live CD on Universal’s Hip-O Records label, which features their passionate, authoritative version of 22 classic hits from CCR was the result of public demand.

Gunner

Gunner

“It was generated by requests of the people who came to the shows,” Stu said. “Over and over they would ask, ‘do you guys have a CD?’” he added.

For Stu, Clifford and the band, there are “favorites” and certain classic songs that the band considers as critical to the success of their efforts. “Born on the Bayou” and “Down on the Corner” are my favorites,” said Cook. Cook added that, while they have no intention of writing new material, the band is considering additional recordings of the old CCR classics.

“The band is now more popular than ever,” added Cook. There are, of course, a number of challenges that face the group for the future said Cook. “Our energy, age, and everybody’s health, in mind and body,” said Cook.

In 2013, Classic Rock Revisited critic Jeb Wright wrote about a Creedence Clearwater Revisited concert he attended.

“The true test of any concert is how the music makes you feel. On this night, this writer walked away with a wonderful feeling, having just witnessed timeless, historical music, performed to perfection. Creedence Clearwater Revisited not only looks to the past, performing iconic songs, they bring them to the modern day, reminding us all of the true importance of this music,” he added.

Any fan of the original CCR deserves the special opportunity to see a non-stop classic rock show that the “oldtimer” fans of the original “CCR” band, parents, children and even grandchildren can enjoy. And they deliver! The Creedence Clearwater Revisited performs the classic songs from the original Creedence Clearwater Revival, and they do it with the style and true accuracy to the original songs released almost 50 years ago.

Griffey and Cook

Griffey and Cook

If you ever have the chance, don’t miss this unique opportunity to relive all the beloved CCR songs that so many of us grew up with. Take the kids, the grandchildren, and friends. Creedence Clearwater Revisited does the classic timeless tracks, and they perform with the panache, gusto, and the technical skills that are the hallmark of the band.

The Okeechobee News is published every Wednesday, Friday and Sunday.

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