Lakeside, a funk band who topped the charts in 1980 with “Fantastic Voyage,” will be taking their Villa Rica fans on a groove-ship cruise when they slippity-slide into The MILL amphitheater on August 5.
The R&B chart-topping group will be the headline event for the city’s third free summer concert, which will start, rain or shine, at 7:30 p.m. at the MILL, located at 106 Temple St. The concert will conclude around at around 10 p.m.
Although tickets are free, reserved seating close to the stage may be purchased through Freshtix.com .
Opening act for the concert will be Myles Brown, a songwriter and guitarist from Atlanta who leads a funk/rock/fusion group that he founded.
The headline act, Lakeside, was a pioneer of the Golden Age of funk, a disco-inspired genre of soul music inspired by Georgia’s own James Brown.
The group’s origin was in 1969 when members of two Dayton, Ohio, groups – the Nomads and the Young Undergrounds – joined forces. Essentially the band was two groups, a stand-up, four-man vocal group, and a four-person funk band.
Known then as the Ohio Lakeside Express, the mega group won a contest to record as session for Curtis Mayfield’s label, Curtom. But the recording never happened, so the group moved to California to jumpstart their careers. Shortly after, the group became one of the most popular club acts in Los Angeles.
That success attracted music producer Dick Griffey, who shortened the band’s name to just “Lakeside” and took over as the group’s manager.
The group had several mis-matchings with record companies, including Motown, but Griffey signed them with his own label, SOLAR (Sound of Los Angeles Records). Griffey was focused on creating a new sound: a funk-oriented blend of disco, R&B, and soul music, and Lakeside fit the bill.
Griffey had founded SOLAR with legendary producer Don Cornelius, who featured Lakeside on his Soul Train variety show, which helped to accelerate the group’s success.
The group’s 1978 debut on SOLAR was “It’s All the Way Live,” which shot to number five on the R&B chart, paving the way for the album Shot of Love. That was the beginning of a series of successful albums and singles that continue to receive airplay to this day.
Their biggest hit was “Fantastic Voyage” (1980), a single from their album of the same name that charted number one and became the group’s only entry on the Billboard Hot 100. They reached the R&B Top Ten again with a soul-infused remake of “I Want to Hold Your Hand” by the Beatles.
The opening act for the Villa Rica concert will be led by Myles Brown. As the Soundmen, Brown and his band play an exciting mix of funk, jazz, pop, and dance music. Brown been a fixture on the Atlanta music scene for the past decade, touring and recording with bands, playing jazz, and working as symphonic composer and guitarist.
His current group features original compositions with intricate melodies and daring solos, and creates a groove-infected, danceable sound that is accessible to everyone.
Alcohol is only allowed at Main Street sponsored events when purchased within the downtown Entertainment District and placed in the plastic cup with the Main Street logo provided by the establishments within the district. Only six-can coolers are allowed at The MILL, and low-profile chairs and blankets can be set up on the day of the show.
The August 5 concert is sponsored by Jones-Wynn Funeral Homes and Crematory, as well as Main Street Villa Rica and the City of Villa Rica.