After a soft opening on Aug. 2, Fleetwood's on Front St. is gearing up for a big bash. The restaurant owned by Fleetwood Mac's legendary drummer will host a series of grand opening benefit parties Wednesday through Aug. 25 featuring the Mick Fleetwood's Island Rumours Band, with some celebrity guests jetting in for the occasion.
Probably the most eagerly anticipated event will see Aerosmith's charismatic lead vocalist, Steven Tyler joining his Fleetwood Mac mate, along with blues great Johnny Lang for some major rocking with the Island Rumours Band on Aug. 23.
The three musicians previously worked together (plus bassist John McVie) in the band The M.O.B., recording a scorching version of "Sharp Dressed Man" on the ZZ Top homage CD, "A Tribute From Friends," released last year.
Steven Tyler, above, will join Mick Fleetwood and blues great Johnny Lang for some major rocking with the Island Rumours Band on Aug. 23.
JON WOODHOUSE photo
The Island Rumours Band includes guitarist/vocalist Rick Vito (in front) and, of course, Mick Fleetwood on drums.
JON WOODHOUSE photo
Robert E. Wills will conduct the Musical Voices of Maui performance of Haydn’s “The Creation,” featuring 130 orchestra and choral members, on Sunday at the MACC.
Photo Courtesy Maui Masterwoks Festival 2012
"Johnny and Steven and myself played on the ZZ Top song, so we all know each other," says Mick Fleetwood. "Steven is ecstatic, he desperately wanted to be here and help out. He's having a nice break from a hectic tour schedule (with Aerosmith). It's incredible luck that Steven will be on island, so we're all happy."
Besides the venerable drummer, the Island Rumours Band will feature guitarist/vocalist Rick Vito, Willie K and Eric Gilliom on guitars and vocals, Mark Johnstone on keyboards, bassist Lenny Castellanos and lead vocalist Gretchen Rhodes.
The special concert on the 23rd will benefit Childhelp on Maui. This non-profit organization seeks to meet the physical, emotional, educational and spiritual needs of abused, neglected and at-risk children.
"They have a hotline (1-800-4achild) which helps people in distress, both children and parents, talk with specially trained people," explains Fleetwoods' manager Jonathan Todd. "It's free and available 24/7. Michael Douglas, the rock band Buckcherry, Shaquille O'Neal and Betty White have all recently done PSAs for them. So we're putting all of our resources towards helping out this local charity that deals with children. Both Mick and Steven want to make a difference, and we hope to raise some serious money."
"We've done stuff with them on the Mainland in the past," Mick adds. "I'm happy all the proceeds will stay here."
Those unable to attend this event can partake in the proceeding festivities.
"There will be a bunch of things that anyone can attend," Todd continues. "And people can always listen on the seawall as long as they don't block traffic. The next night is all for Lahainaluna High School. There will be our regular menu with a $50 cover and Mick will play with Willie K and Island Rumours. All entry proceeds go to Lahainaluna."
The final opening event, on the 25th, will include entertainment with King Paris (aka Rick Vito) and The Hypnotics, featuring the Gentle Genie Giant on percussion. "There's no cover, it's open to the world, for people who love rock n' roll and want to be there," says Todd.
"Willie K is coming back into the fold for the shows," Mick notes. "So the original band is back together, though we couldn't get Raiatea (Helm) because she's in Japan. We started rehearsals on Wednesday and we don't stop until the end on the 25th. I'm very excited. We will rock n' roll."
Fleetwood's is already attracting leading musicians to stop by and jam. Visiting Maui, legendary drummer Steve Gadd sat in with two of our premier players Bob Jones and Nils Rosenblad Saturday night up in the rooftop lounge. Gadd, who has played with artists like Eric Clapton, Steely Dan and Paul Simon, and just ended a tour with James Taylor, was very impressed with the caliber of our guys and promises to return. Henry Kapono was among the folks enjoying the music.
* Tickets for the Aug. 23rd benefit are $500 and $350, and include food and drink. There is a $50 cover charge for entertainment on the evening of the 24th, and a $25 donation for lunch on the same day. No cover on the 25th. There is also a private party on the 22nd with the Mick Fleetwood Blues Band. Call 669-Mick for more info. and reservations.
There was a wonderful celebration of Bob Longhi's life Saturday night at the Lahaina restaurant. Many island musicians kept folks entertained and it was so great to hear Charlie Longhi playing guitar again on stage. With Kelly Covington belting out soul hits like the Staples' "I'll Take You There," the dance floor was jammed.
In his last years, Austrian composer Franz Joseph Haydn created his masterpiece, the oratorio "The Creation," based on the Book of Genesis and John Milton's poem Paradise Lost.
Musical Voices Maui will present this magnificent work on Sunday at 3:30 p.m. at the Maui Arts & Cultural Center's Castle Theater.
Conducted by Robert E. Wills, this one-time performance is part of Maui Masterworks Festival 2012 and features 130 orchestra and choral members, with soloists Leighanna Locke, John Mount, Lisa Paulson, Laurence Paxton, and Gary Shin-Leavitt.
The oratorio has three parts. Part one celebrates the creation of primal light, the earth, the heavenly bodies, water, weather, and plant life. Part two celebrates the creation of sea creatures, birds, animals, and lastly, man. And part three takes place in the Garden of Eden. The soloists personify the Archangels Gabriel, Uriel and Raphael in the first two parts, and Adam and Eve in the third.
A pioneering composer, during his life time, Haydn was hailed as a genius throughout Europe. Mozart proclaimed: "Haydn alone has the secret both of making me smile and of touching my innermost soul."
During his first visit to London, Haydn attended a Handel festival held in Westminster Abbey and was overwhelmed by the experience. As a result he resolved to write an oratorio that would equal Handel's work.
In 1796, inspired by what he had heard whilst in London, Haydn set to work on the score, which he completed in 1798, at the age of 66. "Never had I been so devout as when I was composing The Creation," Haydn wrote. "Everyday I fell to my knees and prayed to God to give me strength for my work."
The first performance attracted surging crowds around Vienna's Schwarzenberg Palace and police had to restore order. One audience member later wrote: "Already three days have passed since that happy evening, and it still sounds in my ears and heart, and my breast is constricted by many emotions even thinking of it."
Preceding its Maui performance, at 2:30 p.m. in the Castle Theater, conductor Robert Wills and pianist Beth Fobbe-Wills will lead a conversation about the piece and demonstrate some of the things to listen for. "Think of it as Leonard Bernstein's Young People's Concerts," says Wills.
Over the years, Wills has been a member of the Minnesota Opera, Minnesota Chorale, and the Edgewater Eight. He has been the music director for the Minneapolis JCC Orchestra, the Nativity Choir, Maternity of Mary Choir, and the St. Paul Community Orchestra.
His baritone solo and conducting career has given him the opportunity to give five concert tours of Europe including conducting twice at the Basilica of St. Peter in the Vatican and concerts in Dublin, Rome, Assisi, Venice, Vienna, Munich, Lucerne and Jerusalem.
* Tickets are priced from $25 and can be purchased at the MACC box office, by calling 242-SHOW or online at www.mauiarts.org. Students with ID will receive a 25 percent discount.
The free second annual Lanai Slack Key Guitar Festival will take place Friday through Sunday at the Four Seasons Resorts' Manele Bay and The Lodge at Koele, along with performances in Lanai City.
Performers include Dennis Kamakahi, John Keawe, Brother Noland, Kawika Kahiapo, Ernest Puaa, Kevin Brown, Benny Uyetake, Ekolu Kalama and hula with Hope Keawe.
Events include the musicians playing the Manele Bay from 6 to 9 p.m. on Friday , and at The Lodge at Koele rom 4 to 8 p.m. on Saturday. Also, at the Lodge there's a Sunday Brunch with Kevin Brown, and more music from the Maui musician from 7 to 9 p.m. in the evening
Lanai City entertainment includes Benny Uyetake at Coffee Works from 9 to 11 a.m. on Saturday, and Ernest Puaa at No Ka Oi Grindz from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. on Sunday.
All events are free. The Four Seasons Resorts Lanai is offering a special accommodations package for Hawaii residents, with rates starting at $199 per night at Manele Bay and $179 per night at The Lodge at Koele. For reservations, call 800-321-4666 and ask for the Lanai Slack Key Guitar Festival Package.