The act 1964 "¦ The Tribute began 24 years ago when Mark Benson and Gary Grimes decided to intertwine their musical talent and love for the Beatles.
"We thought this would just be something fun to do every once in a while," Benson said. "We had no idea this would turn into a full-time job. We sold out Carnegie Hall in New York eight times, and every time, we're like, 'Wow, they're really here to see us?'"
Before each show, Benson transforms from a 55-year-old guitar repairman to the 24-year-old Liverpool-born legend John Lennon. A similar transformation takes place as:
" Grimes becomes Paul McCartney,
" Tom Work embodies George Harrison, and
" Terry Manfredi picks up the drumsticks and answers to Ringo Starr.
But when the tribute band gets offstage, the members immediately change back into their everyday street clothes and blend into the crowd.
"It's nice to have that anonymity, because we can go sit at the bar after a show and hear what people really thought about us," Benson said. "That's quite a perk, and The Beatles didn't have that luxury. Even to this day, Ringo and Paul are prisoners of their own fame."
1964 "¦ The Tribute will visit the University of Oklahoma for the 17th time this weekend thanks to Carl Rath, associate professor of music.
"1964 is dead-on. Everything about them is The Beatles," Rath said. "They sound exactly like The Beatles, and even a little bit better because of the technology available now." "Lauren Parajon