Teach your children still: Five Way Street brings CSNY-style harmonies to Elks on June 3
Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young fans, gather around.
The Five Way Street band out of Tucson will bring the folk-rock supergroup's music to the Elks Opera House at 7 p.m. Sunday, June 3.
Four years ago, Mike Serres, Joe Murphy, Fred Coy, Karl Moeller and Mark Gallegos put their talents together and formed the Five Way Street band and performed songs "you hear from other rock and roll cover bands," Serres said.
After awhile, "we started playing around with Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young material and our harmonies clicked into place. We kept adding songs of theirs into our repertoire, and then we decided we had enough material to do a tribute show," he said.
"There is a CSNY live album called Four Way Street. Since there are five of us, we went with Five Way Street."
That was nearly two years ago. Today, after copious research into the famous ensemble, "we have tried to pull together a nice mix of their hits for our two-hour show," Serres said. "We try to present their music as they would present it live - Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young in their heyday," with guitarist and vocalist Serres, Murphy on guitar and vocals, Coy on vocals and bass, Moeller on keyboard, and Gallegos on drums and percussion.
Granted, the CSNY music can be "a bit more challenging," but Serres promises the Elks audience a high-energy show. And to do it well, a lot of work is involved, not only in rehearsing but also into delving into the history of CSNY and its members, which the Five Way Street band shares as it plays.
The history of Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young reflects that not all was harmonious for them or among them. Yet, despite the peaks and valleys they faced in their careers, all four of its members - David Crosby, Stephen Stills, Graham Nash and Neil Young - have been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice. And, while CSNY was into political activism, "our shows are not political in nature per se," Serres said. "We offer a few of their songs that might have a political message, but we don't focus on that, choosing instead to try to capture the musical performance. Our goal is to entertain, and give all those fans of the Woodstock baby boomer generation an evening of nostalgic rock 'n' roll from America's supergroup."
Five Way Street's concert at the Elks Opera House will offer the crowd "sing-along" favorites and hits of CSNY best years. There will probably be very few songs that we will perform that people won't know, Serres said.
On the bill are such big hits as "Suite: Judy Blue Eyes," "Teach Your Children," and "For What It's Worth," performed by Buffalo Springfield, a folk-rock band that ignited the careers of Stills and Young.
Those who would like a glimpse of the Five Way Street band and its tribute to CSNY can log onto the group's website, www.fivewaystreet.com, or watch videos on YouTube by searching Five Way Street band.
Tickets for the show are $30 for opera boxes, $25 for adults and $22 for students and seniors 65 and over.
"A Salute to Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young" is a presentation of Lonely Street Productions of Tucson.