Fans of the sounds of the '60s are very familiar with the Happy Together Tour that's been traveling stages around the country for the past six years.
Named after The Turtles' hit single "Happy Together," the tour, which was the brainchild of Turtles Flo (Mark Volman) and Eddie (Howard Kaylan), annually brings together popular acts from the '60s. The roster changes every year with the groups taking the music to the masses.
Joining the Happy Together Tour this year are The Cowsills, The Grass Roots, Chicago's Buckinghams, Mark Lindsay and The Association. The Happy Together show will be performed Aug. 21 at The Paramount Theatre in Aurora, Ill.
"We're new to the tour this year," said Bob Cowsill, during a recent telephone interview. "We've stepped into the most interesting tour ever."
Cowsill said he and his siblings Paul and Susan are thrilled to be touring with this particular group of musicians. "And the audience is great," he said. Every night at the show, Cowsill said, fans really seem to get into the performances. "It's all about the songs," he said, adding the tunes all the groups perform were some of the biggest hits of the era.
From The Cowsills alone, audience members can expect to hear songs such as "The Rain, The Park & Other Things," "Indian Lake" and the theme from "Hair."
Cowsill said they're enjoying their time on the road with the other groups they admired years ago and also liking the opportunity to join in on meet-and-greets. "The meet-and-greets are awesome."
He said the crowds are very receptive and still interested in the music. "If someone would have told us this would be happening today, I would have said 'No Way,' " Cowsill said.
The Cowsills, recently the subject of an intense and at times tragic documentary, "Family Band: The Cowsills Story," bonded together as a group of family musicians in the 1960s in Rhode Island. The television show "The Partridge Family" was patterned after The Cowsills. The group featured siblings Bill, Bob, Barry, John, Susan, Paul and their mother Barbara. Their brother Richard served as their road manager. (Matriarch Barbara, their father Bud and siblings Bill, Barry and Richard are deceased.)
Performing on the Happy Together Tour are Bob, Susan and Paul. Brother John performs as a drummer for The Beach Boys.
Cowsill said it's wonderful to see all the iconic groups performing their songs and that "people still want to hear them."
He said every night he listens to the other groups on stage and is "seeing the magic of these shows." He said the musicians starring on the tour are akin to '60s "historians at work."
Cowsill, 65, said he, Paul and Susan are, in a sense, now performing in homage to their brothers and mother who passed away.
"They're there with us spiritually," he said.
"But it's still a family band," Cowsill added. "Susan's husband Russ is also our drummer." At other times, away from this tour, the siblings will perform with some of their children.
Cowsill encourages fans to come out and listen to feel-good music on this tour. "This show balances the hard summer we've all been having," he said, about the sad and disastrous happenings of current society.