Look at how fucking happy I am…
Like some fucking cartoon pastiche of the Goodfellas steadycam shot we are lead through the club.
The low light of a 60s or 70s rock and roll club, the walls decorated with every photo of the beatles you could imagine. All of staff members stopping what they are doing to stop and bow, show their respects as the maitra d, bowing profusely and overdirecting to our seats up near the stage. The feeling that we aren’t waisting our time going to see a beatles tribute band in The Cavern Club, one of two full time 7 days a week Beatles Tribute Bars in Tokyo.
Awesome! And the band hasn’t even come on stage yet.
The band introduces themselves to the ecstatic majoritively Japanese crowd, talking to each other in that Japanese banter that make late night game shows so goddamn funny and illiciting tittering reactions from the crowds. Japanese Paul is the best Beatle lookalike, with his bowl cut somehow suiting him despite it all the way that somehow every single Jap can pull off whatever look it is that they inhabit. But all of the guys are dressed the part in more rock and roll era suits and ties.
And then the music. And I tell you they do not disappoint, opening with an amazing engrish rendition of “Rove, Rove Me Do” and “Mr Postman” and during the gig, among others great versions of “Herp”.
The spectacle of a band singing a songs in a language they can’t even speak doesn’t just end on stage, it teeters down into a crowd which clap and cheer and mouth along, from businessmen sitting with their mistresses in the perfect unphased silence and a cloud of unnending cigarette smoke to the family groups happily clapping along in unison. My favorite being the extatic older woman who lives on her own right in front of the stage and claps and beams and sings and beams to all of the songs. Japanese tribute band groupies. Awesome.
This is my best band night and my one true recomendation of Japan and Tokyo. If you go to Japan, it’s not about having to go if you can…. if you go to Japan and Tokyo you MUST go see a Beatles tribute act.
Finally, here are some videos I recorded of “Money Can’t Buy Me Rove” and “Rorr Over Bethoven” (apologies for the sound quality) :