McCartney Times

Imagine: Lennon’s music, spirit live on

Imagine: Lennon’s music, spirit live on

Imagine: Lennon’s music, spirit live on
December 24
08:55 2017

The date of the show may have changed over the last 32 years and the lineup is ever-shifting, but this weekend’s Imagine concert promises fans everything they’ve come to love.The show, launched in 1985 by musician Ron Butler and others, was designed from the outset to be a fundraiser as well as a musical tribute to the music of John Lennon and The Beatles.Matt Netzer, who has organized the show since 2011, says for many folks, it’s become a tradition.“It’s just become a holiday thing and this was one of the first (Lennon tributes) in the country. Some have gone to 20 Imagines and some bring their kids every year,” Netzer says. “People in their 20s and 30s say, ‘My parents brought me when I was 8 years old.’”Plus, he says, the music is evergreen.“The music is so accessible. No one has to strain to understand the music,” he says.As in years past, this year’s proceeds will benefit Women in Need of the Ozarks. “Every year, we do about $10,000,” he says. “For one night, it’s pretty good. And the great work they do — there’s no administrative costs with them. It’s pretty much dollar-for-dollar. They donate their time and give that money back 100 percent.”Some of the bands playing Imagine 2017 The Creek Rocks (Cindy Woolf and Mark Bilyeu Submitted photo

This year’s lineup includes 10 bands running the gamut from acoustic, to rock, to jazz.“It’s a lot of great interpretations on the songs. Some play them straight, some do their own interpretation,” Netzer says.And it’s one night of the year musicians actually get to enjoy each other’s company.“There’s the older bands that can meet the younger bands. All of these guys are busy gigging, so for them to all be in one place is a great thing,” Netzer says. “They never get to see anybody.”The crowd also has a chance to interact, as again a few rows of chairs have been removed to create a dance area.

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Martin Nethercutt

Martin Nethercutt

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