Originally Published: January 8, 2015 9:42 p.m.
The first thing Alex Flores wants you to know about the "Blues & Soul Explosion" show coming to the Elks Theater is that, while it's a salute to the music of the Blues Brothers, it is not a canned, note-for-note impression of the band made famous the film, "The Blues Brothers."
"You know, the Blues Brothers were actually a touring act before they did the movie," Flores said. The band got its start in 1976, when "Saturday Night Live" comedians Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi first performed on the show with a backing group of well-respected musicians. They recorded an album, "Briefcase Full of Blues," in 1978 before appearing in the movie in 1980.
"We'll be doing a lot of the songs that were made popular by the movie, and the two albums they released, 'Made in America' and 'Briefcase Full of Blues,'" Flores said, but "it's not exactly doing an impersonation of them."
He noted that in the show, like most other Lonely Street Productions shows, "we tend to take more of a 'tribute-in-the-spirit-of' approach, as opposed to doing note-for-note impersonations."
If you're going to do that, you need a hot band, and Flores, who plays singer Jake Blues, said they have that: a nine-piece ensemble featuring a complete horn section, all of whom are members of the Arizona Blues Hall of Fame.
"We've been working with the same cats for ten years now," he said, "and it really comes across. The fun we're having really translates to the audience well."
That means, for example, that, if the crowd is getting into a song, the band can easily add solos and keep the song going to keep the audience dancing.
The horn section will deliver a "wall 'o' sound," he said.
"We're bringing that blues flexibility and sensibility to the show," he said. "It's really going to be quite entertaining from a musical point of view as well as a visual point of view."
The show includes some funny bits, as the Blues Brothers trade barbs between songs.
And, yes, Jake and Elwood will wear their well-known black suits, black John Lee Hooker hats, and white shirts.