Tribute Bands are the Thing, and West Palm has plenty…

We want to continue our series of articles on local music, and this week we want to highlight a trend that’s not going away anytime soon.  Tribute bands – bands that closely emulate the sound and look of major artists – have been in vogue for a few years now.  And a newer trend among tribute bands is “package bands” – bands with similar sounds or from a similar era.

A band based here in Palm Beach County, and soon to play in West Palm is one of these bands that honor three different artists.

Dreams, Promises and Time ( plays the music of Stevie Nicks/Fleetwood Mac, the music of Pat Benatar, and the music of Pink Floyd.  Seasoned professionals from a number of different bands have joined together to create this show that plays to the fans of the 70s and 80s.

It’s a bit amazing that today’s millennials love the music of this era to the degree they do. Fleetwood Mac has been selling out arenas across the country on their last tours (one of which is concluding in Las Vegas this fall), and even seasoned music critics are astounded at their resurgence in popularity.  Covers of Fleetwood Mac songs by some of today’s artists include HAIM, the Lumineers, Florence and the Machine, and Paramore, and have given this generation a taste of the great music that their parents (and grandparents?) lisened to in their youth.

American Idol viewers were treated to two performances this spring by Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo, as they mentored two contestants on the show; and popular TV and Netflix series have often been featuring their music.

Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon album holds the Billboard record for the longest tenure on their album chart (over 900 weeks), is Platinum 15x over and sales of the album place it at number  three or four all time worldwide, depending on who you ask.  Wikipedia notes, “Industry sources suggest that worldwide sales of the album total about 45 million. ‘On a slow week’ between 8,000 and 9,000 copies are sold, and a total of 400,000 were sold in 2002, making it the 200th-best-selling album of that year – nearly three decades after its initial release.”

At one performance of the above-mentioned tribute Dreams, Promises and Time, whose set list was tailored to an older crowd by request, and which only featured a couple of Pink Floyd songs, we were told that a pre-teen was requesting more Pink Floyd.

Many commercial shopping developments and communities have been putting on series of tribute bands for years now.  The City of West Palm Beach, a great promoter of music in general, has often featured tributes in their Sunday at the Waterfront series as well as some at their always-well-received Clematis by Night event nearly every Thursday.

With ticket prices of the original bands pushing above $100 a seat, and sometimes to four figures (and with some bands only having a few of the original members) it’s easy to understand the popularity of tributes, where you can hear the music you loved for free or for less cost than parking at the large concert venues…


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