CLEARWATER — American pop rock band Orleans will perform Saturday, April 24, 8 p.m., at the Nancy and David Bilheimer Capitol Theatre, 405 Cleveland St., Clearwater.
Tickets, starting at $49.50, are on sale now. Visit www.RuthEckerdHall.com.
From their earliest days as a favorite at colleges and clubs in the Northeast United States to studio and live collaborations with industry greats Bonnie Raitt, Jackson Browne, Little Feat and others, Orleans has continually demonstrated musical depth and a true mastery of live performances. The band is recognized for a string of bona-fide classics such as “Still the One,” “Dance with Me” and “Love Takes Time.”
Orleans has been performing live nearly every year since 1972, always with at least half the original members. Formed in Woodstock, New York, in 1972 by John Hall, brothers Lance and Larry Hoppen and Wells Kelly, Orleans went about perfecting its recipe of eclectic material, including R&B seasoned with Cajun and second-line roots. Alan Toussaint, Neville Brothers and Meters tunes were among the mix. But the quartet's music evolved and refined in a more mainstream direction as they developed their unique pop rock sound.
A round of showcase performances in New York City gave rise to a recording contract with ABC Dunhill Records and the release of the eponymously titled first album in 1973. Later signing with Asylum Records, they produced chart-topping hits including “Dance with Me,” “Let There Be Music,” “Love Takes Time,” “Reach” and their American standard, “Still the One.” Adding to each other’s strengths, Hall was the most prolific songwriter while Larry Hoppen supplied the lead voice for the radio hits. Just three of Orleans’ classics have a certified combined airplay total of over 7 million and counting.
After Orleans established national radio popularity, Hall left in 1977 to pursue a solo career, as “Still the One” played ceaselessly as the ABC TV network theme song. With Bonnie Raitt, Jackson Browne and Graham Nash, he co-founded Musicians United for Safe Energy in 1979 and co-produced the Madison Square Garden concerts and Warner Brothers triple album “No Nukes.”
Orleans, with the Hoppens and Kelly, continued to tour and record, scoring a Top 10 hit with “Love Takes Time” in 1979. Following Wells’ untimely death in 1984, a memorial gig reunited the Hoppens with Hall.
“It was with that turning point and the perspective it brought that we started to refer to our Orleans project as a perpetual ‘work in progress,’” Larry Hoppen said.
The performance at Capitol Theatre will be presented at 50% capacity. In addition to frequent multi-layer sanitization of the venue, new XONAR technology has been installed that uses thermal imaging sensors to detect elevated body temperature. Appropriate face coverings will be required inside the facility, contact is being minimized and hand sanitizer stations are readily available. For more information, including social safety guidelines, please visit www.rutheckerdhall.com/facility-safety-protocols.