Jason Sharp

Dyno-Mite Blast Takes Thunder Valley Old School

Jimmy JJ Walker - Click for more images

I was heading out to the Super 70′s Soul Jam out at Thunder Valley Casino and Resort Friday night, so I dawned my rose colored glasses, bell bottoms and platform shoes. Luckily I packed a Big Hunk, Bottle Caps and Screaming Yellow Zongers before leaving. I knew I’d get the munchies since I’m such a burn out and can’t leave home without a joint or three (hey I have a prescription). I was just hoping I could maintain with all that groovy music playing. The last thing I needed was for some narc to rat me out. As for the concert it was far out man and I should add Dyno-mite!

Right on. Not everyone can be as hip as the hipsters from the 70′s, but Friday everyone was hip and just hanging out with the likes of The Emotions, The Chi-Lites, The Stylistics, The Temptations, and the MC for the evening Jimmy JJ Walker.

To start the night off Jimmy JJ Walker took the stage. Most people remember Walker from his role on Good Times as James Evans Junior, or JJ. In fact, Walker coined the term dyno-mite which became slang for great or fantastic.

The Emotions

The Emotions

Walker provided a bit of comic relief in between sets. At one point he was joking around about the price of gas, saying that he pulled into a full service gas station and the attendant asked him if he wanted him to fill it up, to which Walker responded – No, just give me $200 worth – Ba-da-bing.

First up were the The Emotions singing hits like “Best of My Love,” “Don’t Ask My Neighbors,” and “Boogie Wonderland.” Founding members and sisters Pamela Hutchinson and Wanda Vaughn were joined by Wanda’s daughter Wyann Vaughn.

Wyann did a great job filling in for her aunt and founding member Sheila Hutchinson, who was unable to make the concert. The trio did a fantastic job, sounded great, and were styling in their matching black and white dresses.

The Chi-Lites

The Chi-Lites - Click for more images

 

Rock and Roll Hall of Famers, The Chi-Lites, slowly made their way onto the stage as one by one they came out to the tune of “Have You Seen Her.” Decked out in bright yellow suits they sang a number of hits including “Have You Seen Her” and “Oh Girl.” Joining founding member Marshall Thompson were Frank Reed, Fred Simon, and Thompson’s wife Tara Thompson.

Marshall is in the R&B Hall of Fame and the Vocal Group Hall of Fame and has been performing for over 52 years.

Up next were The Stylistics with original band members Herbert Murrell and Airrioin Love. They were joined by Eban Brown and Jason Sharp. Performing their hits including “Betcha by Golly Wow,” “I’m Stone in Love with You,” and “Break Up To Make Up,” the group stayed in perfect synch with each other as they danced throughout their set.

The Stylistics

The Stylistics - Click for more images

 

Headlining the evening was The Temptations Review featuring Dennis Edwards. Edwards was lead singer for the original Temptations for a number of years, replacing David Ruffin.

Joining Edwards were Paul Williams Jr., David Sea, Mike Patillo, and Chris Arnold. Paul Williams Jr. is the son of original Temptation Paul Williams.

Dressed in matching suits the group sang hit after hit including “Just My Imagination (Running Away with Me),” “Papa was a Rolling Stone,” and “My Girl.”

It only took a couple of notes at the beginning of each song for the audience to start cheering as they recognized the tune. Dancing in the aisles, as well as at their seats, people were enjoying a trip down memory lane, with most people singing along.

The Temptations Review

The Temptations Review

 

It was a fantastic night of some good old fashion soul music and a little bit of humor thrown in to boot.

The Summer Concert Series out at Thunder Valley Casino Resort continues to heat up with Bret Michaels, Night Ranger, and Slaughter appearing next Friday June 15th.

Thunder Valley Sets off Dyno-Mite!

Concert Photography

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I was heading out to the Super ’70s Soul Jam at Thunder Valley Casino and Resort Thursday night, so I donned my rose-colored glasses, bell bottoms and platform shoes.

I packed snacks like Big Hunk, Bottle Caps and Screaming Yellow Zongers before leaving. I knew I would get the munchies since I’m such a burnout and can’t leave home without a joint or three (hey, I have a prescription). I was just hoping I could maintain with all that groovy music playing. The last thing I needed was for some narc to rat me out. As for the concert, it was far out, man, and, I should add, dyno-mite!

Right on. I get it. Not everyone can be as hip as the hipsters from the ’70s, but last night at Thunder Valley everyone was hip and just hanging out with the likes of the Dramatics, the Stylistics, the Delfonics, Heatwave, Carl Carlton and the emcee for the evening, Jimmy JJ Walker. The audience was grooving in their seats and boogieing in the aisles. I think there were a lot of sick people at the concert, since many of the people in the bleachers had the same prescription as me.

To start the night off, Walker took the stage. Most people remember Walker from his role on “Good Times” as James Evans Junior, or JJ. In fact, Walker coined the term “dyno-mite,” which became slang for great or fantastic.

Walker started right off with black people versus white people and didn’t let up throughout the evening. He attacked the criminal justice system and how black people are convicted and sent to prison while white people such as Casey Anthony and Lindsay Lohan walk. During a brief break, he told the black people to be back in three minutes, but white people to be back in 10. It was all in good fun and the audience loved it.

Carl Carlton was next on stage, singing two of his most recognizable songs, “Everlasting Love” and “She’s a Bad Mama Jama.” Right away people were up dancing in the aisles and having a great time. Carlton complained about the heat, hoping the sun would have gone down by the time he started, but they got an early start at 7:30, so no such luck.

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Lonnie and Brenda Prudhomme dancing the night away at Thunder Valley Casino and Resort. (Image by: Randy Miramontez)

Following Carlton was Heatwave with original lead singer Keith Wilder. They performed a number of their hits, including “Boogie Nights” and “Always and Forever.” When “Always and Forever” started, more couples jumped up to dance, including Lonnie and Brenda Prudhomme (see photo). I think Lonnie was a reluctant participant, but that’s just my opinion.

Wilbert Hart from The Delfronics performs onstage at Thunder Valley Casino and Resort (Image by: Randy Miramontez)

Next up was the Delfonics with founding member Wilbert Hart and longtime member Garfield Fleming. After all these years, they still sounded the same singing their hits “La-La (Means I Love You),” “Didn’t I (Blow Your Mind This Time)” and “Break Your Promise.”

L. J. Reynolds of the Dramatics (Image by: Randy Miramontez)

When the Dramatics took the stage with original band member L.J. Reynolds, they got off to a rocky start. Not all of their songs sounded quite right, but they did hit their stride with “Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get” and “My Girl.”

Headlining the show was the Stylistics with original band members Herbert Murrell and Airrion Love. They performed many of their hits, including “Betcha by Golly, Wow,” “I’m Stone in Love with You,” “Break Up to Make Up” and a medley of all their hits, ending the show with “You Make Me Feel Brand New.”

By the end of the show, the crowd had diminished somewhat due to the late hour, but those who remained were still up and dancing all the way to the last song. Everyone had a great time and just got lost in the moment, remembering years gone by.

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The summer concert series at Thunder Valley Casino is in full swing. The complete entertainment schedule is available on their website.

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