Concerts, performers return to Salt Lake Valley

Posted at 5:21 PM, Apr 09, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-09 19:21:16-04

SALT LAKE CITY — Many of us recognize the lyrics “Yesterday, all my troubles seemed so far away, now it looks as though they're here to stay.”

Those immortal words from The Beatles mean more during the pandemic to many of the people who suffered or experienced hardship over the past year.

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But those lyrics took on new life Friday in Utah as they were dedicated to all those who lost someone during the pandemic by Beatles tribute band "Rain."

In one of the first large concerts to find its way back to Utah, the band took to the stage for several shows put on by the Utah Heritage and Arts foundation as well as Thrive 125.

“This is what we do,” said Steve Landes, who plays John Lennon. Landes added it's been a tough time for him and the band.

“We were able to kind of get through things, you know, if I can’t be on stage, at least I can pick up an acoustic guitar,” he said. "It clicked… sound check was like we played a gig last week.”

While it was tough for performers, Landes admits it was also tough on crews who work so hard to put help performers around the country.

“For our crew that hasn’t worked this whole year and can’t do something like that, they’ve had to look for other work,” said Landes.

And that is something Steve Boulay with Magicspace Entertainment knows all too well.

“Not being backstage and not being able to employ people, it sucks,” Boulay said. “I couldn’t be happier right now than doing these shows.”

But of course, there are also the fans and audience that have been missing out on the thrill of live music.

“The whole reason we do what we do is because of that live audience interaction,” Landes said. “So doing this, having that light at the end of the tunnel, it's something that we all need.”

That sentiment was echoed by Boulay.

“Just hearing these guys right now," he said, "the audience is going to go nuts."

On the eve of the lifting of the state's mask mandate, another big step will be an audience ready and excited to see amazing music.

“I think maybe people are going to realize that what a spectacular wonderful performing arts and clubs are, and love it and value it all that much more,” said Boulay.

The Maverik Center will still enforce masks and social distancing after the mask mandate lifts, and these shows will require them.