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Review: Fakes fab in Beatles tribute 'Let It Be'

Wednesday - 7/24/2013, 8:12pm  ET

This Monday, July 15, 2013, photo provided by The Hartman Group shows James Fox performing "Magical Mystery Tour" in the rock musical "Let It Be" at the St. James Theater in New York. Reuven Gershon and Fox have some insanely daunting shoes to fill: Every night, they're asked to impersonate John and Paul on Broadway. Gershon and Fox portray, respectively, John Lennon and Paul McCartney in a Fab Four cover band that has taken its concert show, "Let It Be," from London's West End to New York. (AP Photo/The Hartman Group, Chad Batka)

JENNIFER FARRAR
Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) -- Even fake Beatles can bring back good memories of the real thing, when they're truly talented.

The Beatles, arguably one of the most talented and influential bands in musical history, produced a treasure trove of unforgettable tunes. Mostly written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney, their dozens of classic hits include "Yesterday," ''Hey, Jude," ''Get Back," ''Come Together" and "Let it Be."

If you can check your nostalgia at the door, the tribute show "Let It Be" that opened Wednesday night on Broadway at the St. James Theatre stands on its own as a lively, multimedia concert and a rocking good time. A rotating cast of 10 accomplished musicians recreate the Beatles onstage, performing concert or studio versions of 40 of their songs.

Starting with the early Cavern Club days in Liverpool, they skillfully progress through pop songs performed on the "Ed Sullivan Show" to the colorful psychedelic era of "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" to the end times of "Abbey Road."

Projections of authentic, carefully edited news clips provide glimpses of the increasingly turbulent social times during the band's years together, through the 1960s to their early 1970 breakup. Due to copyright issues, the Beatles' real names are never used either in the program or during the 2
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