Music News & Reviews

The fans keep getting younger, and Creedence Clearwater Revisited keeps on playing

Creedence Clearwater Revisited, featuring Stu Cook, center, and Doug Clifford, second from right
Creedence Clearwater Revisited, featuring Stu Cook, center, and Doug Clifford, second from right

Creedence Clearwater bassist Stu Cook noticed an odd phenomenon during the group’s tours.

“I remember we were looking out at an audience a few years ago and said, “All those kids are here. Are they lost?’” Cook said. “Ultimately it’s great because young people are more physically involved in the music. They’re the ones who drive the concerts.”

The band plays Thunder Valley on Friday and brings in Cook’s fellow Rock and Roll Hall of Famer and Creedence Clearwater Revival founder Doug Clifford. They started Revival in 1967 and Revisited in 1995.

“The music of the ’60s has amazing legs,” Cook said. “We make new fans everywhere we go and they keep getting younger, covering now three generations. It’s like if we lose one fan at one end we pick up another at the other end and amazingly wind up with more than ever.”

There’s a younger presence in the band also, Dan McGuiness, the new lead singer and rhythm guitarist.

“At our age you’d have to say he’s younger. He’s under 40. We knew this gal in Michigan, a big Creedence fan and she arranged for him to send us some tapes and I’d critique them. Then John Tristao, our singer, got ill and we had to cancel one concert. We met Dan in Houston the next day and he said he could fill in. Nobody thought anybody could do it, but the buyer didn’t even know there was a different singer up there. He kept filling in and John was finally unable to go on. John had been critical in the success of the whole Revisited project.”

Creedence has also remained relevant through the decades.

“Our catalog comes from a time when there was political controversy and not a lot has changed, that’s for sure. ‘Who’ll Stop the Rain’ still works. ‘Fortunate Sun’ is always relevant. I don’t set out in concerts to make political statements but I do not fear to tread there.”

“We’re slowing down some, I must admit. I do not have to tell you how time drags by when touring. There’s sitting in the hotels, sitting in the airports, flight cancellations, schedule changes. We used to perform over a 100 concerts a year but we were a lot younger. Last year we did 50-something. This year we’re doing around 40.

“It’s just not as appealing as it once was. All in all, I’d rather be with my grandchildren.”

The concert also features another legendary band, Three Dog Night, purveyors of ear worm hits like “Shambala” and “Joy to the World.” (7 p.m.; $34.95-$169.95;

One of the season’s strangest teamings takes place at Thunder Valley Saturday when Il Divo is joined by Leann Rimes. In concert in Reno not long ago, Il Divo performed a concert heavy on Latin rhythms and sounds, along with other memorable moments like a stunning “Nessun Dorma.” It was extraordinarily exciting and visual and full concert length. Rimes must fit the bill somewhere. (7 p.m.; $49.95-$169.95)