Bluegrass/Country | Saturday, Feb 4, 2017 | 8:00 PM | $27-35
“Ever since I was a young boy I played the silver ball” may not be your standard bluegrass lyric, but it is a line known by all the world from the biggest rock opera of all time, The Who’s Tommy.
Springfield, Missouri-based The HillBenders are one of the few bluegrass groups that recognize their ability to bridge the gap between popular music and bluegrass, selecting material that defies any hillbilly stigmas. With their widely varied influences, they create bluegrass songs that unify.
Forty-Five years after its original release, The Who’s Tommy—a classic of classic rock—has now been fully realized as a full-length bluegrass tribute featuring The HillBenders. Conceived and produced by SXSW co-founder and longtime musician/producer Louis Jay Meyers, this Bluegrass Opry brings a new perspective to Tommy while paying total respect to its creators.
Meyers had been looking for the right band to pull off this high wire bluegrass approach for several decades, and The HillBenders are the right band. With a perfect mix of virtuoso musicianship and rockstar vocals, The HillBenders bring Pete Townshend’s original vision to life in a new, exciting way. The combination of banjo, dobro, mandolin, bass, and guitar bring the same energy and vision to Tommy as The Who did with a full rock band and orchestra.
The Who’s Tommy was originally composed by guitarist Pete Townshend as a rock opera that tells the story about a “deaf, dumb, and blind kid [who] sure plays a mean pinball.” The story includes his experiences with life and the relationship with his family. The original album has sold 20 million copies and has been inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame for “historical, artistic and significant value.” In 2003, Rolling Stone magazine ranked Tommy number 96 on its list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.
This event will be in the Mainstage Theater and has Reserved seating. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact our Patron Services team by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, or calling 240-912-1058. See our full list of ticketing policies here.