As in the past, the lineup includes a diverse variety of acts. VP Dale Coleman does a good job of finding something to appeal to most musical tastes. And along with the concerts are a host of other events, like monster trucks, bull riders and motocross championships.
War returns to open the Fair on Friday, Sept. 5. For many years the band was the traditional opening night act, even back to the days when I worked there. After a break of a couple years, they’re back. War puts on a solid, entertaining show and is worth seeing.
The Doobie Brothers return on Sunday, Sept. 7, along with Grand Funk Railroad. The two groups paired for a Fair show in 2006, reminiscent of those old concerts of the 1970s (like when I saw the Doobie Brothers at the Swing Auditorium in San Bernardino in 1976). They still put on a great show, especially with Grand Funk as the opening act.
There are several other shows of note, including the legendary Smokey Robinson (no relation) on Friday, Sept. 12; The Bangles, Berlin and the Motels on Friday, Sept. 19; and Lifehouse and Gavin Rossdale on Sunday, Sept. 28. Also, Jessica Simpson is slated to perform on Saturday, Sept. 20 (Tony Romo and the Cowboys are in Green Bay the next day, so I doubt there will be any celebrity sightings of the Dallas quarterback at the Fair).
I’ll be back doing the “house” announcements before each show, so be sure to listen for “Good evening ladies and gentlemen, and welcome to the End of Summer Concert Series at your Los Angeles County Fair.” If you make it to any of the concerts, be sure to look for me at the sound board right around 8 p.m.
Also, there is usually a lot of great music elsewhere around the Fair, and it goes well into the night on weekends. It’s kind of nice to keep checking out good music after the grandstand shows. I hope the popular Ravelers will be back at the park stage, and there is usually good music in Avalon, the restaurant across from the grandstand. Click here to see a Ravelers clip. They'll be at the Fair's Stage in Park Square on Sept. 19.
Here’s 2008 the grandstand stage and sports lineup:
- Sept. 5, War
- Sept. 6, Sugarland
- Sept. 7, Doobie Brothers and Grand Funk Railroad
- Sept. 11, Monster Truck Madness
- Sept. 12, Smokey Robinson
- Sept. 13, KC and the Sunshine Band and Village People
- Sept. 14, Jaguares
- Sept. 18, American Daredevils
- Sept. 19, The Bangles, Berlin and The Motels
- Sept. 20, Jessica Simpson
- Sept. 21, Mariachi USA Fiesta
- Sept. 25, Guilherme Marchi Classic Professional Bull Riders
- Sept. 26, Charlie Wilson and the Gap Band, with Rose Royce and Lakeside
- Sept. 27, LG World Championships of Freestyle Motocross
- Sept. 28, Lifehouse and Gavin Rossdale