By Lorraine Kay
LANCASTER, CA – Weird Al Yankovic filled the Grandstand Arena with laughter for a good two hours Saturday night as the Antelope Valley Fair and Alfalfa Festival 2010 continues at the Antelope Valley Fairgrounds, on Avenue H in Lancaster. Just the second night of the Lancaster Honda Concert Series, the Weird Al concert entertained a crowd of young and old with parodies of old and familiar songs and original music.
Yankovic’s second visit to the Antelope Valley Fair had a weaker turn-out than his performance in 2008, which was a free event to fair attendees. This year tickets were required for the track-side seating, which could account for the weaker turn-out. But the show was every bit as entertaining as the previous concert, and those that couldn’t cough up the cost of a ticket were the losers. Yancovic’s shows are known as much for his theatrics wildly visual as much as musical excellence. Packed with multimedia fun, he takes advantage of big-screen videos and a multitude of costume changes to totally entertain.
Yankovic opened with a Polka medley, playing accordion to the parodies of rock songs. He followed ti with “You Don’t Love Me Anymore”, an original in the style of James Taylor, which ended with the smashing of an acoustic guitar. Following an “Al show” interview with Eminem, he performed “Couch Potato” a parody of Eminem’s “Lose Yourself”.
Enhanced by a video of the Simpson’s, next up was Brain Freeze”, a parody of the fictional song “Shave Me” by Sadgasm, Homer Simpson‘s grunge band. Injected between a variety of short film clips and interviews with Robert Plant, Jessica Simpson and Madonna and others, were more songs, including “You’re Pitiful”, a parody of “You’re Beautiful” by Christine Aguilerra and “Dare To Be Stupid”, an original in the style of Devo.
He followed these with a combination video and live performance of a tribute to actor Charles Nelson Reilly entitled simply “CNR”, performed in the styled of White Stripes,
A real crowd-pleaser, “Money For Nothing/Beverly Hillbillies”, was up next. A parody of “Money for Nothing” by Dire Straits; the lyrics are based on the theme from The Beverly Hillbillies. It seems no classic television is sacred when it comes to Weird Al’s parodies. Next up was “I’m In Love With The Skipper”, a parody of “I’m N Luv (Wit A Stripper)” by T-Pain, featuring Gilligan of Gilligan’s island.
Other parodies followed including; “Ebay”, a Parody of “I Want It That Way” by Backstreet Boys; “Bedrock Anthem”, a Parody of “Under the Bridge” and “Give It Away” by Red Hot Chili Peppers; about life in The Flintstones‘ home city of Bedrock. “Another One Rides the Bus,” parodies Queen’s “Another One Bites the Dust”, while “Ode To A super Hero, parodies Billy Joel’s “Piano Man.
Known best for his parodies of Michael Jackson’s hit songs “Beat It” and “Bad”, he performed “Eat It” and “Fat” with the latter in fat costume.
Other fun songs were “Craig’s List”, an original in the style of The Doors, and “Amish Paradise”, a parody of “Gangsta’s Paradise” by Coolio, which incorporates lyrics from “The Ballad of Gilligan’s Isle” by Sherwood Schwartz.
For the encore and big finish, Yankovic pulled out all the stops as the entire band reappeared on stage dressed in Star Wars costumes, including Darth Vader, Imperial storm troopers, and Jedis. As the Jedi Master, Yankovic performed
“The Saga Begins”, a Parody of “American Pie” by Don McLean. The lyrics recount the plot of Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace as told from the point of view of Obi-Wan Kenobi. This, of course, opened the way for “Yoda” a parody of “Lola” by The Kinks. Lyrics recap the plot of Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back.
As the concert series continues Sunday offers Espinosa Paz & Chuy Lizarraga y su Banda Tierra Sinaloens. Monday brings the iconic surf rock band The Beach Boys back to the A.V. fairgrounds. Joining the line-up on Tuesday night is the iconic ZZ Top, sunglasses and chest-length beards in tow. The fair concert series does not end without one more rocking night. Wednesday, August 25 with Dierks Bentley.
For more information on all concerts and fair events visit www.avfair.com. Tickets are available for all of the Lancaster Honda concert Series events at the fair box office or online at www.avfair.com.
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:
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.