Musical preferences aside, Number 9 rocked in tribute

One of the fascinating things about music is how two people can listen to the same recording of a song and come away with different feelings and interpretations.

At Health Central on Saturday I ran into WAGT-TV meteorologist Jeff Rucker and was telling him that I didn't remember how much I disliked the Beatles' double disc the White Album until hearing it performed Friday night in the Imperial by Ed Turner's Number 9 band.

The group itself, with its complement of string musicians, dancers, brass players and videos, was fabulous as usual.

But most of the songs, to me, seem silly, boring and just plain forgettable: Dear Prudence -- boring; Bungalow Bill --sing-song simple, silly and boring; Good Night -- good grief, boring; Why Don't We Do It in the Road -- repetitiously boring; the countrified Don't Pass Me By -- I'll pass it by; I'm So Tired -- puts me to sleep; Rocky Raccoon -- to me ranks right up with Bobby Darin's Mack The Knife as a song I don't need to hear again in my lifetime.

Now, granted, the album has some standouts, including Back in the USSR , Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da (Life Goes On) ; Blackbird (sung incredibly well by Roger Davis); While My Guitar Gently Weeps (played brilliantly by Number 9 lead guitarist Chip McDonald); Happiness Is a Warm Gun , I Will , Birthday and Helter Skelter .

There were many others in the Imperial audience who, I'm sure, completely disagree with my evaluation and totally enjoyed almost all the songs performed by Mr. Turner and company.

One of my friends seated nearby Friday night, in fact, told me how he loathes Eleanor Rigby (which Number 9 performed in a long introductory first set) and thinks most of Paul McCartney's songs sound "wuzzy."

I am just the opposite and think that ballad is a literary masterpiece with its imagery of Eleanor Rigby "wearing the face that she keeps in a jar by the door" and Father McKenzie "darning his socks in the night when there's nobody there."

It really doesn't matter what your musical tastes are just as long as you love good music, or what you think is good music.

Augusta is very fortunate to have many great bands like Ed Turner's Number 9 so we can decide for ourselves what we like and don't like.

Mr. Turner, by the way, announced that Number 9's next Beatles recreation will be Abbey Road . Now that's an album filled with great songs.

LEON EVERETTE'S CONCERT: Former RCA Records country star Leon Everette, of Ward, S.C., and his band will perform his gospel music show at 7 p.m. Saturday at Cornerstone Community Church, 1518 Edgefield Road in North Augusta, three miles north of Interstate 20.

There will be an offering taken. For other details, call the church at (803) 441-8900 or Toni Brunson at (803) 349-5869.

Mr. Everette's hit singles for RCA and Mercury records included Over , Giving Up Easy , Don't Feel Like the Lone Ranger , If I Keep on Going Crazy and Hurricane . He opened shows for Conway Twitty, George Jones, Hank Williams Jr. and other stars.

Don Rhodes has written about country music for 37 years. He can be reached at (706) 823-3214 or at don.rhodes@morris.com.

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