Saturday, July 27: The Barley House, 5612 SMU (formerly Yale) Blvd., Dallas


Tribute bands work their magic by staying in the groove
The Dallas Morning News, Thursday, April 15, 2004


Many of us worship somebody in the music biz. How we show our devotion (by collecting albums, joining fan clubs or lingering long into the night on Internet discussion groups) defines our faith.

Then there are tribute bands. They're seen by many as the seminal form of musical hero worship, the path for those who believe imitation is the only way to total sonic salvation. Practitioners sometimes become so enveloped that they begin to believe they're the real thing.

. . .

A band performing Neil Diamond covers must be Elvis-impersonation-campy or one step away from being clinically insane, right? But Mr. Diamond is a criminally underrated songwriter, and doubters should check out Diamondbag for proof. The band turns Mr. Diamond's buttery adult contemporary tunes into rollicking rockers that are perfect for Dallas' more laid-back nightclubs.

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Diamondbag makes DMN list of 2002's Top 10 local music happenings

"NO. 6 - TRIBUTE BANDS: The home of chain restaurants specializes in knock-off bands, too. Club Dada started it with the (Grateful) Dead Thing. Then came Hard Night's Day (Beatles), Sticky Fingers (Rolling Stones), Naked Lunch (Steely Dan), Diamondbag (Neil Diamond), Oliver's Army (Elvis Costello), Weener (Weezer), Blow Aces (Oasis) and Outlandos D'Amour (Police). New pile-ons: Paranoid (Black Sabbath), Back in Black (AC/DC), Queen For a Day (Queen) and Sham Parsons (as in Gram). The madness is going national: The Dave Matthews Cover Band and Hand of Doom, the Sabbath cover band with former Hole bassist Melissa auf der Maur."

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Now he's a believer!

Looks like The Dallas Morning News is just getting around to discovering what Diamondbag fans have known all along: Neil is back, and he's cool! As part of its promo for the November Neil Diamond concert at the American Airlines Center, the News talks to Gary about Diamondbag and Neil's enduring popularity.

"There's that comfort that comes from hearing something familiar, but 'Cherry Cherry' is just a great three-chord pop song," Gary said. "I think people are just into good songs. I went and saw him in Fort Worth in '95, and one thing I noticed is how multigenerational it was. You'd have a grandmother there with her daughter and her daughter."

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