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  1. #1

    The 4 Tops & Temptations In Concert August 2017

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    I saw The Temptations and 4 Tops in concert last night, and while The Temptations were absolutely INCREDIBLE, The 4 Tops portion of the show was seriously lacking. It made me quite sad.

    Otis Williams has somehow consistently found singers who can pretty-closely replicate the Temptations hits, and their show is well planned out, tight in routines, and just superb.

    The Tops, at least last night, were off. Yeah, the group sounded good on the hits, but there was a lot of off-the-cuff chatter and wasted space between songs, and while their lead vocalists are talented, they just do not sound like the classic 4 Tops. Guess no one can replicate that Levi Stubbs voice.

    The worst part of the Tops's show was Duke's tribute to Levi, Obie, and Lawrence. It went on and on and on, and he mumbled his words... It was hard to understand what he was saying during his long tribute monologue. Then, he sang "My Way," and while I have incredible respect for this 80-something year old road warrior, I have to admit that it was really, really, REALLY bad. Duke should not sing solos at this point in his career, no matter how heartfelt. It was painful. During this portion of the show, I would estimate that a quarter or more of the audience got up and left. It just went on way too long, and people just lost interest. I felt bad for the group.

    Have any of you seen these groups recently? Have you had the same experience as me or something quite different?

  2. #2
    I saw both groups in Manchester UK a few years ago when the Temps line-up included Williamson, Herndon and Weeks and have to say the Tops were much better musically. I have seen the Temps since the early 70's and this was by far the worst performance musically, the leads were far too loud and veered too for away from the original versions of the hits. The dance routines were heafty and cumbersome.
    The Tops on the other hand were musically more pleasing to the ear and had the audience up on their feet throughout third performance. Abdul has particularly applauded.

    I've not seen the current line up of the Temps but agree that Otis usually picks great singers who replicate the hit sound we love.

  3. #3
    I think it was just the opposite last night. The Tempts were tight, and their leads were really spot-on. One of the guys sounds a lot like David Ruffin... The Tops were just off. They were the ones who veered way off from the melodies and such. The Tempts had the crowd up, dancing, cheering... People became very lethargic while the Tops were on, and as I posted above, many walked out.
    Last edited by mistercarter2u; 08-24-2017 at 01:15 PM.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by mistercarter2u View Post
    Name:  082317_TEMPTATIONS4TOPS_1130x300.jpg
Views: 371
Size:  40.4 KB

    I saw The Temptations and 4 Tops in concert last night, and while The Temptations were absolutely INCREDIBLE, The 4 Tops portion of the show was seriously lacking. It made me quite sad.

    Otis Williams has somehow consistently found singers who can pretty-closely replicate the Temptations hits, and their show is well planned out, tight in routines, and just superb.

    The Tops, at least last night, were off. Yeah, the group sounded good on the hits, but there was a lot of off-the-cuff chatter and wasted space between songs, and while their lead vocalists are talented, they just do not sound like the classic 4 Tops. Guess no one can replicate that Levi Stubbs voice.

    The worst part of the Tops's show was Duke's tribute to Levi, Obie, and Lawrence. It went on and on and on, and he mumbled his words... It was hard to understand what he was saying during his long tribute monologue. Then, he sang "My Way," and while I have incredible respect for this 80-something year old road warrior, I have to admit that it was really, really, REALLY bad. Duke should not sing solos at this point in his career, no matter how heartfelt. It was painful. During this portion of the show, I would estimate that a quarter or more of the audience got up and left. It just went on way too long, and people just lost interest. I felt bad for the group.

    Have any of you seen these groups recently? Have you had the same experience as me or something quite different?

    Mr Fakir will be 82 years young this December so i tghink we should all be real happy hes still with us and still performing imo.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Roberta75 View Post
    Mr Fakir will be 82 years young this December so i tghink we should all be real happy hes still with us and still performing imo.
    There comes a time when they have to let it go and often, they can't see it and there may be a financial reason for some of them to go on and on and on.

    The businessman in Otis always comes through which is why his Temptations survive.

  6. #6
    That's sad to read, but hopefully it was an off night. Everyone is allowed one.

  7. #7
    I think there were two issues with the 4 Tops performance. Firstly, and probably most significantly, their show was too varied for an outdoor, party-type arena. They started off well, singing the hits, which is what that kind of rowdy crowd wanted, then they went into more of supper-club type thing, singing "Mack The Knife" and doing the very lengthy tribute to the three deceased Tops. The crowd became restless... Those folks, for the most part, were there to drink and party and sing along to songs they'd heard on the radio... NOT to see a serious show. Secondly, as much as I respect Mr. Fakir [[and, yes, I am glad he is still out there singing and performing, and my remarks were in no way meant to attack him), he has reached a point where his voice is fading. Tackling a big song like "My Way" may not be a wise move for a man of his age and limited vocal ability... That said, it might play fairly well in an indoor theatre where people are actually sitting and listening and appreciating that he is speaking with his heart. Perhaps it was that the setting was just all wrong...

  8. #8
    That would be Larry Braggs who used to sing with Tower Of Power. Thursday night at Coney Island was the first time that I saw Otis' new lineup & I have to say that I was impressed.

    Larry indeed brings a lot of that Ruffin flavor to those songs. He's a helluva entertainer & he definitely brings a different dynamic to The Temptations lineup.

    I have to say that both groups were very well-received here on Thursday night in Coney Island. The crowd cheered the Tops like crazy & it seemed as though they could do no wrong with the Brooklyn crowd.

    The Temptations set was energetic & well-received & they too added a few songs which were aimed at the supper club set & while I was surprised at their addition, those songs got over with the crowd.

    Here in Brooklyn, the crowd really received all of them warmly & the crowd was rocking with all of them. It was nice to see them & I was definitely impressed with Mr. Braggs & it was good to see Mr. Tyson onstage, sounding & looking good.
    Last edited by juicefree20; 08-26-2017 at 05:12 AM. Reason: Additional thought

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