On Friday, November 11, at 7:30 pm, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductees “The Drifters” will bring their soulful sounds to the Seby B. Jones Performing Arts Center. The Drifters, one of Rock & Roll’s founding vocal groups, are once again touring the U.S.
After The Drifters began in the early 1950s, the singers had twenty years of uninterrupted hits, making them the second-most successful recording group of all time, according to Billboard Magazine. Through an historic journey involving five legendary lead singers, including Rock & Roll Hall of Famers Clyde McPhatter and Ben E. King, the group’s ongoing story has covered the spectrum of Rock & Roll.
The Drifters were the first musical group to include string instruments into Rhythm & Blues music with their song “There Goes My Baby.” They were the first musical group to sell 2 million records with their pop classic, “Up On The Roof,” and also the first African-American vocal group to be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. They were in the Hall’s first class, along with The Rolling Stones, the Beatles, Bob Dylan and The Supremes. Their classic “Under The Boardwalk” is the most-played R & B record ever. Twenty other million-sellers followed. Their songs have been penned by songwriters such as Jerry Leiber & Mike Stoller, Carole King, Gerry Goffin and Phil Spector.
The Drifters have played at the White House three times, given a benefit concert in Berlin the day the wall fell, performed for the Pope, the Queen of England and Nelson Mandela, and toured for the USO in three war zones, from Korea to Iraq. It’s been awhile since the group toured the United States, but they are gearing up for a monumental celebration of their 50-year catalogue to support their new album: The Drifters Salute the Great American Songbook Live.
This concert will be in the Frances Boyette Dickson Auditorium in Louisburg College’s Seby B. Jones Performing Arts Center (JPAC). For tickets, call the Louisburg College Box Office, (919) 497-3300 or 866-773-6354. If tickets are still available, they may also be purchased the day of the show. The Box Office, in the main lobby of the JPAC, is open Monday through Friday from 1-5 pm, as well as 90 minutes before show time. Seats are not reserved. Tickets are also available online at http://www.jpacarts.com. Doors open at 6:45 pm. Children 12 and under, accompanied by an adult, are admitted free to all performances. Louisburg College offers a special discount for groups of 20 or more.
Additional support for this series comes from the Franklin County Tourism Development Authority (www.visitfranklincountync.com).