NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

PortWatch

May 2, 2014

Lovin' Spoonful's Sebastian brings 'Magic' to Beverly

John Sebastian’s musical career involves everything from taking the stage at Woodstock to penning award-winning songs that appeared on records, in theater, on television and more.

Now, he will bring his musical wealth to the Larcom Theatre in Beverly on Thursday for a show produced by Harry Pardee and Owen Freeman.

Sebastian was an original member of The Lovin’ Spoonful and is a 2000 inductee in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of the band, which he left in 1968 to pursue a solo career. His hits include “Do You Believe in Magic?” “Daydream” and “Summer in the City,” as well as the theme song “Welcome Back” for the hit TV show “Welcome Back, Kotter.”

The 8 p.m. show will be preceded by a cocktail hour. Concertgoers will be able to bring their beer and wine to their seats for the show, said Pardee, who lives in Rockport.

Sebastian, 70, said the concerts are always an energizing experience for him.

“This is a lot of fun for me,” he said. “Each show is always different, and the audience is very much a part of the show. There is the freedom that comes with doing a show — one guy and one guitar. And I have a great sound engineer, who did 30 years at Radio City Music Hall.”

Pardee said that in this particular concert, Sebastian will be up-close and personal with the audience.

The show will feature a variety of his work over the decades, and he will share with the audience the roots of some of the material, as well as answer questions about Lovin’ Spoonful, Woodstock and his career.

“He has a charismatic personality,” said Pardee, who was among the estimated half-million music lovers who flocked to the legendary Woodstock, N.Y., festival in 1969.

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