Help was on hand for the crowd that gathered at Haskell Field on Monday night — and it was just the kind of help that made for an enjoyable summer evening.
HELP!, a Beatles cover band with local ties, performed at the field as part of the Sudbury Park and Recreation summer concert series. The band played for an all-ages crowd on an evening, as with last week’s summer concert event, where threatening skies held off, ultimately clearing completely.
The crowd of about 250 heard classics such as, “I Wanna Hold Your Hand,” “Get Back,” “In My Life,” “I Saw Her Standing There,” and, of course, “Help,” as well as some less-familiar deep tracks, while enjoying the pleasant summer temperatures and opportunity to mingle with friends, family and community members.
“It’s great to come to these things when they’re outside like this,” said Sudbury resident Neil Minkoff. “It’s like a Norman Rockwell-type of community event, everyone outside and hanging out together.”
And, he added, “They sound pretty good.”
Roberta Conte, a Natick resident who attended the concert with Sudbury resident Retsy Mackinnon, praised the band’s “authentic sound” and said it brought back memories of the music of times gone by.
“I always like coming to these concerts but I was particularly interested in this one,” said Conte.
And attendees weren’t the only ones having fun. HELP! member Marc Hertzberg is a longtime Sudbury resident who said playing in his town is a particularly enjoyable, meaningful gig among the 15-plus shows the band will put on this summer.
“I love playing for (my) hometown crowd,” said Hertzberg, who, as the band’s lead guitarist and keyboardist, assumes the role of George Harrison. “I’ve looked forward to this all summer. It’s great to play for my friends and neighbors.”
According to Hertzberg and fellow founding member Mike Rolla (Paul McCartney), the band was formed in 1989 by lifelong Beatles fan Rolla, a Maynard resident. The band played its first gig in 1990, and has performed steadily since. Some members have changed over the years, but the band has played in its current incarnation, which also includes Chris Hylander (Ringo Starr) and Mark Poulin (John Lennon) for the past 13 years, said Rolla.
“We love it,” said Hertzberg. “We’re totally in it for the fun of playing.”
The summer concert series will conclude next Monday, Aug. 15, with a performance by the Reminisants, a Boston-based oldies and request band.