Shippensburg University’s H. Ric Luhrs Performing Arts Center was teleported back in time on Thursday night during a performance by The Doobie Brothers.
The rock-and-roll band that made a name for itself in the 1970s is able to remain relevant after nearly 50 years of performing together due to the support of its devoted fan base.
The show began with a performance of “Real Love,” from the band’s ninth studio album, “One Step Closer.” Following the opener were a handful of the Doobies’ top-ranking songs including “Rockin’ Down the Highway,” “White Sun” and “Jesus is Just Alright.” After a short exit from the stage, the band returned once again to wrap up the show with a performance of “China Grove.”
The Doobies’ sound goes much deeper than traditional rock-and-roll, as their music features soothing harmonies and a combination of both acoustic and electric instrumentals.
The group released its self-titled debut album in 1971; however, it was not until the release of its second album, “Toulouse Street,” that the band’s career really took off. Some of the band’s most popular songs like “Listen to the Music,” “Jesus is Just Alright” and “Rockin’ Down the Highway” were released on its second album under Warner Bros. Records.
Over the years, the band has overcome its share of hardships, including changes to the group’s lineup. The original members of The Doobie Brothers included Tom Johnston on guitar, keyboard, harmonica and vocals, Patrick Simmons on guitar, banjo, flute and vocals, Dave Shogren on bass guitar, guitar and backing vocals and John Hartman on drums, percussion and backing vocals.
The Doobies’ current members are Tom Johnston on guitar, keyboard, harmonica and vocals; Patrick Simmons on guitar, banjo, flute and vocals; and John McFee on guitar, harmonica, pedal steel, violin and vocals.
While on tour, the trio is accompanied by Bill Payne on keyboard, Marc Russo on saxophone, Ed Toth on drums and John Cowan on bass guitar and vocals.
Despite the struggles, the Doobies are still on top in an ever-changing industry. Their newest album, “Southbound,” was released in 2014 and features more recent recordings of some of the band’s greatest hits, accompanied by some of country music’s top charting artists like Brad Paisley, Toby Keith, Blake Shelton and the Zac Brown Band.
Today, the Doobies discography consists of 14 studio albums, nine compilation albums and five live albums, including three multi-platinum, seven platinum and 14 gold albums.
They have sold more than 48 million records worldwide, took home four Grammy Awards and have even been inducted into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame.
The Doobie Brothers continue to produce and perform timeless hits for their ever-growing, multi-generational fan base.