The tribute bands are performing weekly at The Bandstand in Eastbourne. Tonight they had Stayin Alive, a Bee Gees tribute band. I saw them practicing when I went for a walk this afternoon. They weren’t bad and I thought if I had some time, I would go and see them this evening, which I did.
Now, The Bandstand is out in the open, but they tend to block off areas that you would normally be able to walk on and view it from a height or below when there is a performance. When they were practicing, I could hear them from a block away. Technically, you wouldn’t have to pay to see any of these bands as you would still be able to hear them. I decided I would go for the full experience and paid my £7.75 entrance fee.
I thought there would be more people, and I heard someone say that it was busier the week previously, but I don’t know who performed last week. I had a very good view of the crowd and was very happily people watching before the show started. The group arrived and yes, they did sort of look like the Bee Gees. If you closed your eyes, you could almost believe it was really them performing. Apparently, they won best tribute band last year! I thought they were very good.
As soon as the band started performing, an elderly lady, very nicely groomed and dressed, albeit wearing a bright pink cowboy hat, walked up to the front of the stage and started to dance. It was apparent that she may have had some issues. She was with a group of people that were mentally and physically challenged. What struck me about her was how normal she initially looked and how well cared for she was in her appearance. She had a great haircut. It was only her facial expression and physical movement that gave away that she may have had some issues. Eastbourne has many people like that.
There were quite a few people at the concert with similar issues. One of the things I noticed about all of them was their complete and utter abandonment to the enjoyment of the music. They moved what they could and all had smiles on their faces. They were totally uninhibited. I found it quite moving and found myself to be a bit envious of their lack of inhibition. It did bring a tear to my eye to see people enjoying themselves in this way.
It reminded me of children. Children can get away with so many things, like wearing Spiderman costumes in broad daylight or headbands with stars on top that move around, or fairy wings. I want to wear fairy wings, but could only get away with it at a fancy dress party. Children are so free and uninhibited until we tell them they need to grow up. If they carry on with these traits into adulthood, they are called eccentric or other things.
Eventually, other people came up to The Bandstand to dance while the group performed. I guess they decided to say to heck with it and just get up and strut their stuff. It was mostly women granted, and all ages! They were having a whale of a time. There were even a few people there in wheelchairs! I settled to tapping my feet and moving my upper body and singing along with everyone else. The band encouraged people to get up and dance and boy did they. There is no way that you would have been able to experience this without a ticket.
Those with the most challenges in their life carried on until the very end. I guess it gives Stayin Alive a whole new meaning!