People who lived through the 1960s will often say it’s hard to describe all the changes, and how we as a nation experienced them. “You had to be there,” they say. They will often talk about the music that expressed their thoughts and feelings.
Jim Duffy was there. He was a drummer and guitarist. He was a television cameraman and producer in New York, where he grew up. He went on to play with different rock bands and create award-winning television documentaries.
With his years as a musician in rock bands, his mastery of film storytelling, and his interest in the 1960s, Duffy created a live multimedia musical experience that brings that decade to life.
“This is the ‘60s” will begin its tour of California and the Midwest on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Oct. 15, 16 and 17 at 7:30 p.m., at Three Stages in Folsom.
Duffy said the show is family-friendly. Audiences typically include grandparents, parents and children, and the children are familiar with many of the songs.
The show connects five distinct periods of music in those 10 years: The Early Years (1960-63), The British Invasion (1964-65), American Fights Back (1965-67), Psychedelia (1967-1968), Flower Power (1969-1970).
Duffy said his first challenge was to find musicians today who are versatile enough to play all the sounds of the ‘60s, from Peter, Paul and Mary and the Beach Boys to the Jefferson Airplane, Janis Joplin, the Who and Led Zeppelin.
He found them close to his home in Charlotte, N.C. Four musicians from the Carolinas who had been performing as an arena tribute band called Smokin’ form the core of the live music: Daryn Owen, bass/vocals; David Krol, keyboards/guitar/vocals; Eddie Darst, lead guitar/sitar/vocals; and Freddie Trumbower, drums/percussion).
Duffy discovered recording artist Joan Burton (guitar/harp/vocals) performing in Myrtle Beach, S.C.
Dancer-singers Janisse Flowers and Anna Rednouer match the dance styles to the changing musical styles.
Duffy is producer, director and show manager.
Greg Duffy, 27, inherited his father’s fascination with the ‘60s and love for the music. An accomplished graphic designer for broadcast programming and a classic rock drummer, Greg is production designer and associate producer for the show.
The impacts of the live performances are heightened by film clips of major events and animation.
“This is the ‘60s” is the story of how major events influenced the music, and how music affected the fads, fashions and politics of the decade.
Duffy said audience members’ responses often go from tears to cheers.
“Everyone loves the music,” he said.
Tickets are available online at threestages.net. The box office is open for ticket purchase in person or by telephone Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and two hours prior to performance. The telephone number is 916-608-6888.
Three Stages is located on the Folsom Community College campus, 10 College Parkway, in Folsom.