Telluride's Opera House Welcomes "Super Diamond,"1/14

[click “Play”, Susan speaks with Randy Cordero]



Surreal Neil Promotional Photo 2010 “Super Diamond, a Neil Diamond tribute band that tours nationally, have become enormously successful and have achieved pseudo-stardom in their own right,” David Bernstein, New York Times

We’re not talking De Beers. We’re talking da beers, which will be flowing Friday night, January 14, when Telluride’s historic Sheridan Opera House welcomes the band “Super Diamond: The Alternative Neil Diamond Experience” to town for an evening of glittering sequins, platform shoes, and bell-bottoms. In other words, a generation-spanning, uptempo walk down memory lane.

Doors and cash bar open at 8:30 p.m. Show time is 9 p.m.

Stay home if you are a sentimental Diamond lover, whose favorite tunes to croon include “Hello.” Super Diamond’s show is more frat party than Hallmark card. Their show is a high octane rendition of Diamond’s original pop tunes – “Cracklin’s Rosie,” “Forever in Blue Jeans,” “Sweet Caroline” – tricked out with heavier guitar work, then salt-and-peppered for spice with contemporary riffs by Guns N’ Roses, Kiss, and AC/DC.

Super Diamond, originally a San-Francisco-based sextet, was formed 18 years ago as a novelty act fronted by Randy Cordero, aka “Surreal Neil,” a singer-songwriter with an uncanny ability to impersonate the real Mr. Diamond’s throaty baritone. Over a long, thriving career of packing them in at  venues such as Irving Plaza in New York, 930 Club in Washington, D.C., Bimbo’s in San Francisco, and House of Blues venues in Chicago, Los Angeles, San Diego, Cleveland and Dallas, plus landmark venues such as the Hollywood Bowl, Boston’s Fenway Park and Coors Field in Denver, Super Diamond has become a tribute band’s tribute band, in a world that covers the musical alphabet from A for “Abba” to Z for ZZ Top and includes multiples for super bands such as the Beatles.

Rolling Stone, Spin, The New York Times, and The Washington Post have acknowledged Super Diamond’s unique place in the world of wannabes.  The band has appeared on CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, Comedy Central, and David Letterman. But here’s the most compelling factoid: one of the biggest fans of Super Diamond is Mr. Diamond himself. The Grammy-winner has so far performed twice onstage with his impersonators, proving once again imitation is in the highest form of praise.

Super Diamond has been Cordero’s day job since 1998. To preview the concert and learn more from the lead singer, click the “play” button and listen to his interview.

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