ROCK AND ROLL DOMINATE LANCASTER HONDA CONCERT SERIES LINE-UP

By Lorraine Kay

LANCASTER, CA – This year more than ever, the concert line-up for this year’s Antelope Valley Fair and Alfalfa Festival being held at the Antelope Valley Fairgrounds on Avenue H in Lancaster is packed with solid rock and roll. Sponsored by Lancaster Honda, the 10 day event starting this Friday, August 20 has five rive rock bands lined up to entertain the 2010 fair-attendees.

Starting off the concert line-up this year, on Friday, August 20th, is rock and roll icon and Motor City Madman, Ted Nugent.  A Detroit native, Nugent acquired the moniker because of his prodigious guitar talent, his propensity for ear-shattering volume and his over-the-top onstage antics.  A world-class showman, the outspoken Nugent has sustained a five decade career, spawning multi-platinum hits like Amboy Dukes’ Journey to the Center of the Mind to classics like Stranglehold and Cat Scratch Fever.  Additionally, chartbusting High Enough and cult classic Fred Bear continue to enthrall rock venues around the globe. With a career resume of 34 albums and 30 million records sold, Nugent ranks among the elite in Rock & Roll history.  But to many, it is the sounds he wrings from his venerable Gibson Byrdland guitar that draws the seasoned faithful and mesmerizes the beat-hungry youngsters. Ticket prices for the concert are $50 for the gold section, $25 for trackside and FREE grandstand seats with paid admission.

            Following Nugent on Saturday, August 21 will be Weird Al” Yankovic, delivering his unique blend of parody, comedy and . . . polka?  Yes, for a man who learned how to play rock ‘n roll on the accordion, polka had to fit in there, somewhere. As for his influences in comedic and parody music, he credits Stan Freberg, Spike Jones, Allan Sherman and Frank Zappa, among others, as “wonderfully sick and twisted” artists.  Other influences one might derive from his on-stage performance are Mad Magazine and Monty Python.  When asked if artists ever deny him permission to do a parody, he noted that most are flattered, but the exception was the self-parodied artist formerly known as “The Artist Formerly Known As Prince”.  Go figure.  The song, Another One Rides the Bus, a parody of Queen’s hit, Another One Bites the Dust, is typical of the license Yankovic employs in his act.  Fans can also relate to his satirical version of the Knack’s My Sharona, which he conveniently converts to My Bologna.  In short, Yankovic remains the king of pop culture parody. Ticket prices for the concert are $50 for the gold section, $25 for trackside and FREE grandstand seats with paid admission.

            As if that is not enough, Monday, August 23, promises to find fair fans rocking out again with surf rock icons The Beach Boys. Serving the genres of surf rock, sunshine pop, psychedelic pop, psychedelic rock, baroque pop and art rock, the band was rightfully christened “America’s Band”.  Originally a family band, consisting of singer-musician-composer Brian Wilson, brothers Carl and Dennis, cousin Mike Love and friend Al Jardine, the touring band, today, still features Love, our front on vocals and long-time band member, Bruce Johnston. . With 36 U.S. Top 40 hits, (the most of any U.S. rock band) and 56 Hot 100 Hits, their résumé reads like a ‘who’s who’ in music discography, earning them the title bestowed on them by Rolling Stone Magazine as one of the “100 Greatest Artists of all Time. Ticket prices for the concert are $50 for the gold section, $25 for trackside and FREE grandstand seats with paid admission.

There is no lack of power on the stage this year. Joining the line-up on Tuesday night is the iconic ZZ Top, sunglasses and chest-length beards in tow. Band members, Billy Gibbons, John Beard and Dusty Hill hold claim to being the longest running major rock band with original personnel intact.  Often called “That Little Ol’ Band From Texas”, the trio begun in 1969, has long moved-on to national attention and induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Fans will recognize the hit La Grange, which is still one of the band’s signature pieces.  The song is unabashed elemental boogie, celebrating the institution that came to be known as “the best little whorehouse in Texas.” The melding of grungy blues guitar with synth-pop brought hit after hit including smash singles  Gimme All Your Lovin’, Sharp Dressed Man and Legs, Cheap sunglasses and My Head’s in Memphis. ZZ Top’s music is always instantly recognizable, powerful, soulful and 100% Texas American in derivation.  Ticket prices for the concert are $75 for the gold section, $40 for trackside and FREE grandstand seats with paid admission.

The fair concert series does not end without one more rocking night. Wednesday, August 25. Booked as the Country offering to the fair line-up Dierks Bentley promises to please the diehard rock and rollers as well. Describing his country style as not “straight-up-the-middle” it bridges the gap. Growing up on a potent hybrid of honky-tonk, bluegrass, classic country and modern rock & roll, he forged his own unique sound and style.  The CMA Horizon Award winner shared, “I love the feeling of combining the best older stuff with the edginess of newer, more progressive sounds. Bentley delivers moments of introspection with songs like Pray or Better Believer.  But those moments are book-ended by his opening slide guitar rampage that channels a Harley hauling ass in the outlaw lament Life on the Run.  Inherently, Bentley understands that to connect with a lot of people, his instrumentation must be as diverse as the people packing the stadium.  His Feel That Fire delivers the pulsing energy, passion and dynamic sensibility of his praised live show. Ticket prices for the concert are $65 for the gold section, $30 for trackside and FREE grandstand seats with paid admission.

Tickets are available for all of the Lancaster Honda concert Series events at the fair box office or online at www.avfair.com.

      The 10 day celebration that begins Friday, August 20, and concludes Sunday, August 29, 2010 is a 70 year Antelope Valley tradition. In addition to the Lancaster Honda concert series there will be innumerable other events including; exhibits, motorized events, bull riding, carnival rides, great food, free grounds entertainment and much more! Traditional events like the Rural Olympics, Jr. Livestock Auction and Home Arts exhibit competitions continue to involve the community in one of a kind, fun events.

      General admission is Adults (12 & older) – $8.00, Juniors (6-11) – $5.00, Children under 6 – FREE with paid adult, Seniors (62+) – $5.00 and Active Military – FREE with Military Service I.D. (dependents must show I.D.). Parking is $5.00. Special discounts are available for special events as follows:

      FRIDAY, 8/20, Open 4 to midnight – 4 to 5 p.m. FREE Parking and Admission, plus one (1) FREE ride and one (1) FREE game ticket.

      SATURDAY, 8/21 and 8/28, Open 2 to midnight – Rotary Club of Lancaster BOOK DRIVE – 2 to 4 p.m. at the Main Gate – Bring one (1) NEW or three (3) gently used elementary level book(s) and get one (1) FREE admission and one (1) FREE ride pass

      SUNDAY, 8/22 and 8/29, Opens 2 to midnight – Grace Resources Canned FOOD DRIVE – 2 to 4 at the Main Gate – Bring five (5) cans of food between and  get one (1) FREE admission and one (1) FREE ride pass. (Canned Food Drive promo does NOT include ticket to concert on 8/22 or Demo Derby on 8/29.) $25 wristbands are available for purchase until 9p.m. & are good for rides all night. After 9p.m. to close NO $25 wristbands sold, rides are full price. $1 games (until 9p.m. only).

      MONDAY, 8/23, Open 4 to midnight – 2 for 1 Admission – 4 to 9 p.m., with online coupon ONLY from avfair.com – sponsored by R. Rex Parris Law Firm.

• KIDS DAY – Kids 11 and under FREE admission.

• SENIOR DAY – Sponsored by High Desert Medical Group – FREE admission for seniors aged 62 and older.  Fairgrounds open at 2p.m. for seniors, 4p.m. for public. Seniors ride Carousel and Ferris Wheel FREE ALL day. FREE lunch sponsored by Halley-Olsen, 2 – 3:30p.m. or while supplies last. Food Specials for seniors ONLY until 6p.m. at participating concession stands.

• SPECIAL-NEEDS CITIZENS DAY sponsored by High Desert Medical Group – FREE admission for special needs citizens and one (1) caregiver. Fairgrounds open at 2p.m. for special needs citizens, 4p.m. for public. FREE lunch 2 – 3:30p.m. or while supplies last.  Limited rides FREE 2 – 4p.m…

• FREE Admission for the Recently Unemployed – Two FREE general admission tickets will be stamped when a recent unemployment check or paystub (within 12 months) is presented with valid photo ID until 9p.m. ONLY. This cannot be combined with any other promo. 

      TUESDAY, 8/24, Open 4 to midnight – $2 DOLLAR TUESDAY – Admission, rides and games are $2 each until 9p.m… There will also be $2 specials at participating concession stands. (EXCLUDES parking, parking is $5).

      WEDNESDAY, 8/25, Open 4 to midnight – High Desert Broadcasting’s “WACKY WEDNESDAY” – $5 admission for all ages with on-line coupon ONLY at avfair.com, until 9p.m..

      THURSDAY, 8/26, Open 4 to midnight – “COME BACK THURSDAY” – $25 ride wristband is available for purchase on 8/26 for $20 at carnival ticket booths with presentation of a redeemable coupon from a previous carnival ticket purchase. REDEEM AT CARNIVAL TICKET BOOTH, NOT FAIR BOX OFFICE. NO duplications accepted. This PURCHASE offer is good ON 8/26, until 9p.m., ONLY. BOTH $25 & $20 wristbands are good for rides all night. All games, $1 each.

      THURSDAY, 8/26, Open 4 to midnight – 9 a.m. – Kiwanis Jr. Livestock Auction in the R. Rex Parris Show Arena. 6 p.m. JLA BBQ at the Kiwanis BBQ Heritage Park -$10. Buy BBQ dinner ticket at Administration Office or call Entry Office at 661-948-6060 ext. 226. FIGURE 8 RACE – 7:30 p.m., Grandstand, FREE with paid admission.  Festival seating: first come, first seat.

      FRIDAY, 8/27, Open 4 to midnight – 4 to 5 p.m. – FREE Parking with avfair.com online coupon. Includes one (1) FREE ride and one (1) FREE game. PROFESSIONAL BULL RIDERS – 7:30 p.m., Grandstand – Admission – Gold Buckle $50, Reserved Grandstand $20.  NO Free Grandstand, ticket is required.  Ticket includes admission into the Fair.

      SATURDAY, 8/28, Open 2 to midnight – RURAL OLYMPICS – 6:00 p.m… FREE with paid admission.  Festival seating: first come, first seat. Fireworks Show after Rural Olympics.

SUNDAY, 8/29, Open 2 to 11 p.m. – DEMOLITION DERBY- 6:00 p.m.

Reserved Grandstand $20 at the gate.  NO Free Grandstand, tick.e.t required. Ticket includes admission into the Fair.

There will be NO entry to the Fair one (1) hour prior to closing.  Barns close at 10 p.m. and Exhibit buildings close at 11 p.m. nightly (with the exception of Sunday, 8/29 when the buildings close at 10 p.m.).  All buildings are ADA accessible.

For more information visit www.avfair.com, or call (661)948-6060.