These Beatles are from Glasgow.
Thankfully, kilt-clad Ringos and bagpipe-toting Lennons aren’t exactly what Clark Gilmour and his crew had in mind when they started their tribute band and were then cast to play the Beatles in The Beatles Experience, an internationally touring show en route to Kelowna.
“This is an authentic interpretation of The Beatles music,” said Gilmour, in interview from the United Kingdom this week. “We’re all from Glasgow, Beatles fans and thought lets go out there and give a really good bash at delivering the Beatles music.”
Apparently it worked. The Beatles Experience, a touring theatrical show which casts different bands for each tour, contacted 25-year-old Gilmore and his friends Joe Kane (Paul McCartney), Craig McGown (George Harrison) and Grahame Critcher (Ringo Starr) to take the reins this year.
Thus far they’ve been to South Africa and, upon completing the upcoming Canadian dates, will be heading to New Zealand.
“If you love singing Beatles songs and playing Beatles songs, eventually you’re going to find yourself on stage pretending to be the Beatles,” said Clark. “So the band just made sense.”
The Beatles influence is so prevalent in popular music that Clark says playing their music is also just good experience to log.
Personally, he’s a big fan of the band’s earlier work—The White Album and Rubber Soul—but each of the band members is different.
Gilmour, who takes on Lennon’s persona, is the son of a Beatles impersonator and graduated from the University of Glasgow with a Master of Arts degree in theology and religious studies, though he claims his only religions are The Beatles and Liverpool Football Club.
His buddies are of similarly unusual backgrounds. Kane apparently got hooked on the movie Help, the second movie the Beatles did, and started learning their catalogue of songs before branching out into his own compositions.
He now has three solo albums under his belt full of Beatle-seque pop and has been invited to portray Paul McCartney on Made In Britain, a U.K. theatre show.
McGown spends the bulk of his time running his guitar school, The Craig McGown Guitar School, in central Scotland and has received national radio play with his band Ramblers. While his Beatles connection may not be immediately evident, he claims The Doors, The Beatles and Eric Clapton among his early influences.
Critcher, meanwhile, is a self-taught percussion maniac who has played with a string of bands that vary widely in genre.
The Beatle Experience comes to Kelowna Community Theatre on June 19 at 8 p.m. Tickets are $49 and still available.