Oct 10, 2012
LIVERPOOL LEGENDS TRIBUTE ‘BEATLE’ IS ONE OF THE FAMILY
Tom Hindman photo The Liverpool Legends performed at Uuniversity of Charleston’s Riggleman Hall to a packed house.
Liverpool Legends: Beatles Tribute Show
Tribute ‘Beatle’ is one of the family
by Monica Orosz
Daily Mail staff
Guitarist Marty Scott says it was stressful but ultimately a career changer when his Beatles tribute performance passed muster with the sister of the guy he portrays.
He now calls Louise Harrison, sister of the late Beatles lead guitarist George Harrison, both his adoptive mother and big sister.
“I’m sitting on her front porch swing right now,” he said during a phone interview. “We take care of each other.”
Scott is one-fourth of the Liverpool Legends, the tribute band he and Louise Harrison put together shortly after George Harrison died in 2001. Scott already had been performing in a tribute group, and that’s how he met Louise.
“I was performing at a Beatles convention and she was the honorary guest,” he said. “We were the headlining act, and she was coming to be the guest speaker. I was quite nervous – I was was like, ‘I hope I don’t suck,’ and after the show the promoter said, ‘Miss Harrison would like to speak with you.’
“We ended up really hitting it off,” Scott said. “Which was really weird that the ‘George’ guy was hanging out with George’s sister. We’ve never not been together since then. We kind of adopted each other.”
Louise had the idea to put together a new tribute group featuring the very best Beatles-like performers she could assemble – and she wanted Scott to be a part of it.
A week after the convention, Louise introduced Scott to Paul McCartney.
“I got to sit on a couch with him for 45 minutes. He was so cool,” Scott recalled. “Louise and I had gone to dinner at a nice Italian restaurant before, and I had just enough wine in me that I wasn’t nervous. And she introduced me as her new adopted baby brother.”
Scott said McCartney was supportive of Louise’s idea to put together a top-notch tribute band, one that would even include a version of himself, down to the left-handed guitar playing.
“We wanted a Paul that was able to play lefty because it doesn’t look right the other way,” Scott said. “We needed people with certain ranges and that looked a certain way.”
After all, the band members had to be able to look and play like the Beatles through all of its phases, from “Please Please Me” through “Rubber Soul,” “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Heart’s Club Band,” “Yellow Submarine” and beyond.
“Louise was so connected. She helped me pluck guys from the best groups,” Scott said.
A year later, Liverpool Legends was born, with Scott as George Harrison, Kevin Mantegna as John Lennon, Bob Beahon as Paul McCartney (yes, he’s a lefty), and Greg George as Ringo Starr, with the most striking resemblance to the drummer.
The show’s first stop, and it was a long one, was in Branson, Missouri, the Vegas of the Midwest, where the band played five nights a week for about eight years.
We went as far as we could go in Branson,” Scott said. “Then we started touring more. It’s a little more fun.”
George Harrison was known as the quiet Beatle and he wasn’t nearly as prolific as Lennon and McCartney.
“Since Louise is heavily involved in the show, I get to do a lot more George stuff than most Beatles tribute shows,” Scott said.
The playlist depends on the venue.
In Branson, the band had a set list of mainstream Beatles hits. But when the band played for a Beatles convention in Liverpool, it got to add some variety.
“Those are hard-core people,” Scott said. “They wanted every B side song and things people don’t often play, along with solo material.
“Generally when we’re touring, though, it’s pretty mainstream.”
For Sunday’s concert kicking off the Charleston Community Music Association season, Scott said the program won’t include a playlist, and with good reason.
“We don’t really do a program. We like to mix it up,” he said. That leaves room for audience request, too.
Scott said audiences cross generations.
“This music still holds up today,” he said.
One of the band’s projects, under Louise’s leadership, is a program to promote music education in schools and helping to raise money for musical instruments.
“These kids are so into the music,” Scott said. “There’s no other group like that – Elvis didn’t really transfer down through the age groups. This is the only music where a kid can agree with his grandparents.”