Last Friday night I made a quick hop north of the border to Velden, Austria, with my friend Rob McKenzie to catch him and his band, Help – A Beatles Tribute. I hadn’t watched and listened to them for a couple years and was amazed to hear how solid and tight they’d become, from the opening notes to the closing bows.
I’d been tossing around a story idea for some time to chronicle what it’s like, really like, warts and all, for musicians to play in a tribute band, and this quartet was the perfect inspiration.
It’s an interesting story; cover bands needs to play, perform and live up to the demanding expectations of fans and club owners yet rarely seem to attract the respect they deserve. Help is by many measures successful: they’ve performed in more than a dozen European countries, play out regularly, have attracted a decent core following and most importantly for working musicians, make a living primarily from their music.
That story’s coming soon. In the meantime, here are fifteen images from their gig at The Bluesiana Rock Cafe in Velden, a charming little resort town on the western shores of the Wörthersee lake in Austrian Carinthia.