November 12, 2014

Fab Four make a splash at David’s

As published in The Erin Advocate

The Fab Four band took Erin on a colourful trip down memory lane Saturday night, lighting up David’s Restaurant with their tribute to The Beatles.

It wasn’t exactly the Ed Sullivan Theatre, but there was plenty to stimulate the nostalgic imagination of a room packed with fans old enough to remember the original band’s New York appearances on three consecutive Sundays in February 1964.

It was part of a plan by restaurateur David Netherton to make dinner entertainment a bigger part of Erin’s image, by bringing in bigger acts like ones that used to be popular when Stage West Dinner Theatre operated in Mississauga.

“There’s only so many entertainment dollars, but people will pay for quality,” said Netherton, who tries to do something special about once a month. It has ranged from Yuk Yuk’s comedy and musicians of good repute to dinner shows by Erin Community Theatre – their 8th annual Christmas show, The Art of Believing, runs December 10-19, with details at

Restaurant owner David Netherton with members of the Fab Four tribute
band (left to right) Mark Harrison as Paul, John McDonald as John,
John Turfryer as Ringo and Tom Walsh as George.
As Erin builds up its destination profile, Netherton is hoping to schedule a series of shows and perhaps work with other local businesses to sponsor bus trips to the area that would combine the town’s natural beauty with shopping, dining and entertainment.

Century Church Theatre in Hillsburgh has been attracting customers from far afield for many years, with an annual brochure packed with theatre and music, both professional and amateur. Their 10th annual traditional English pantomime, Snow White and the Famous Seven, runs November 21-30, and singer Debbie BeChamp leads A Country Christmas matinee on December 7. Details are at

Netherton is able to fill his banquet room using posters in the restaurant and around town, website and Facebook promotion, a monthly e-newsletter and flyers in The Advocate to get the word out.

The Toronto based Fab Four put on an energetic performance, with lots of attention to detail in Beatles costumes, hair, instruments and re-creation of the music without any pre-recorded sound or digital tricks.

Naturally, they follow a timeline, starting with simple early hits like All My Loving and She Loves You, progressing to Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band and Hard Day’s Night, and mellowing out with Imagine and Hey Jude.

There was lots of audience participation with dancing, clapping and, when requested, screaming women. Stand-out vocals and stage presence were provided by Mark Harrison on the left-handed bass as Paul and John McDonald as John, with Tom Walsh as George and John Turfryer as Ringo taking their turns to make sure that a good time was had by all.