The Boys of Summer will play at Garden Groove Summer Series
Jimmy Williamson and several friends had been playing together as a band off and on for about 40 years when Williamson decided to do a little side work.
The drummer did some dates with a Rolling Stones tribute band, and his longtime band mates felt a bit snubbed. Why was he doing this, they asked?
“Well, I made lots of money, I played for thousands of people and stayed in a five-star hotel,” said Williamson, recalling the memory during a phone interview from Los Angeles.
Lead singer Darrel Monson looked Williamson in the eye and said, “We could do that.”
So in 2002, Williamson, Monson, Chris Turbis, Craig T. Fall and Billy Winkler decided to become a Don Henley tribute band, since Monson’s voice sounds similar to Henley’s and they were all big fans.
They did that for a couple years, but “we couldn’t go anywhere without people screaming for Eagles stuff,” Williamson said.
Their agent backed up the message the crowds were giving the band, and in 2004 “we started doing hard-core Eagles stuff and never looked back,” Williamson said.
They became The Boys of Summer: A Tribute to The Music of The Eagles and from 7–9 p.m. Saturday, July 30, the band will play the Garden Groove Summer Concert Series at the Western Colorado Botanical Gardens.
As it happened, 2004 also was the year Williamson sold the music store he had owned in Los Angeles for 25 years and he and his wife moved to Fruita, he said.
While the Boys of Summer are still basically based out of Los Angeles, “I’m a Colorado guy,” he said.
“My backyard looks out on the (Colorado National) Monument, it’s beautiful,” he said.
This is the third year the Boys of Summer have performed as part of the Garden Groove Summer Concert Series, and this year they come having recently finished 16 weeks playing at Harrah’s in Reno, Nevada, and as a headliner at the three-day Foothills Summerfest in California last weekend.
“We love playing western Colorado,” Williamson said. “We’ve attracted quite a fan base out there.”
The band also has attracted a newer member: Jerry Schaeffer, former owner of Western Anglers in downtown Grand Junction.
Schaeffer joins the band on bass guitar for the shows Winkler can’t make.
And so, with two locals, the Boys of Summer will pay tribute to the Eagles’ music and to the memory of Glenn Frey. The founding member of the Eagles died in January.
“We just talk about him all through the show,” said Williamson, who listed off “Peaceful Easy Feeling” and “Take it Easy” among other songs Frey sang and/or wrote.
Tickets for this Garden Groove concert cost $15 and can be purchased at wcbotanic.org or by calling 244-5506.