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Doobie Brothers perform in concert at Harrah's Atlantic City

Doobie Brothers perform in concert at Harrah's Atlantic City
Doobie Brothers perform in concert at Harrah's Atlantic City
Donald B. Kravitz

Doobie Brothers perform in concert at Harrah's Atlantic City

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The band revved up the audience into a Doobie frenzy and rocked the night away. The Doobie Brothers performed in concert Friday night, Jan 31, 2014, when they took the stage in the Concert Venue at Harrah's Atlantic City.

Doobie Brothers perform in concert at Harrah's Atlantic City
Donald B. Kravitz

The anticipation of what was to come was high even before the band took the stage. “I was raised on the music of the Doobie Brothers and they sound better now then I remembered them,” said Ryan of Toms River, NJ as he removed the Doobie Brothers bandana he was wearing on his head.

The band opened with the high-energy sound of the huge hit, “Jesus Is Just Alright” stretched out with a bit of a band jam followed by the equally irresistible “Rockin’ Down the Highway” and “Take Me In Your Arms”.

There were songs covering a few different years of the band’s growth, including a few from the latest album, “World Gone Crazy” that were well received due to the extended lineup, which also included a very capable sax player and a dynamic keyboardist.

It was a high-energy, crowd-pleasing show that got hotter later in the performance when the band bounced into, “Taking it to the Streets” which got the audience up singing and dancing.

According to the Doobie Brothers, there have been many ways people chose to describe their music. “Someone once said simply, ‘listen to the music.’ It’s hard for us as the Doobie Brothers to define our music, and as a matter of fact one of the things that has kept the band going through the years is an approach that isn’t self-limited stylistically.”

Pat Simmons and Tommy Johnson founded the Doobie Brothers in San Jose, CA in 1970. Loosely modeled after a San Francisco Band known as Moby Grape, the three guitar, three part vocal harmony became the distinctive sound of the Doobie Brothers that has carried them to the heights of popularity.

Their first album produced in 1971 introduced them to their public even though that initial album garnered no notable hits. The group hit pay dirt in 1972 with their second album, “Toulouse Street”, which yielded the Doobies most recognized song, “Listen To The Music,” hitting No.11 on the charts. “Toulouse Street” also produced another of their hit songs “Jesus Is Just Alright” which rose to No. 35.

“The Captain and Me,” the Doobie Brothers third album, included two songs written by Tommy Johnson, “Long Train Runnin” which went to No. 8, and “China Grove” rising to No. 15. With the success of this third album, the Doobie Brothers firmly established themselves as a force in music.

It was in 1974, on the bands fourth album, “What Was Once Vices Are Now Habits,’” that the band had its first No. 1 hit, “Black Water” selling more than 2 million copies. “Black Water was written by Pat Simmons and was the first song that featured him as the lead vocalist.

By 1975 the band had become one of the most popular rock bands in the country and it was also the year that illness forced Johnson out of the band. Needing a new member, the band added Michael McDonald, a former member of Steely Dan to fill Johnson’s place. McDonald had an immediate impact on the band. With him in the band, the Doobie Brothers had a platinum million selling album in 1976 with “Takin’ It To The Streets,” (No.13) written by McDonald.

1980 brought recognition to the Doobie Brothers with the band receiving three Grammy’s for “What A Fool Believes” which was awarded 'Record of the Year', 'Song of the Year' and 'Best Vocal Arrangement', and a forth Grammy for “Minute By Minute” for 'Best Pop Vocal performance, Duo/Group'.

The Doobie Brothers final tour was in 1982. At the end of the tour, the members went their separate ways with Johnson, Simmons and McDonald all having hit solo albums. 1987 marked the reformation of the Doobie Brothers with Simmons and Johnson (without McDonald) for an 11-city tour, which raised more than $1 million for a variety of charities.

The tour renewed interest in the Doobies both from the followers perspective and the bands viewpoint. The Doobie Brothers sound returned in 1989 when they recorded the hit “The Doctor” rising to No. 9. Over the years, the Doobie Brothers have released a total of 16 albums - have earned 13 gold and 11 platinum sales awards and have performed around the world for over 35 million fans.

Doobie Brothers website

Concert images on Getty Images