Whenever they hit the stage, singing the famous hits of the Bee Gees, Stayin’ Alive tends to bring the house down. Maybe that is because the baby boomers are getting nostalgic. Or maybe the concert goers feel at home because they know all the songs, by heart. Maybe of course, the band just sounds that good.
Whatever the reason, Stayin’ Alive is havin’ fun. “Probably no one in the world will ever see Abba or the Bee Gees again,” said Tony Mattura. “Last week, the Bee Gees announced that they will not perform anymore. So maybe we are as close as people will ever get to seeing them.”
The group’s band members were hand picked by producer Larry Lichash. They were chosen for their voice, their looks, and musical talent. “The producer knew what he wanted when he chose us,” Mattura said. Mattura is Barry Gibbs, Joe Varga is Robin, Todd Sharman is Morris. And together they became know as Stayin’ Alive. And, so far, they have won rave reviews wherever they have played.
“We played the Cambian Islands. We were on stage and there was thousands of people just going crazy. They really thought we were the Bee Gees. What we try to do is give people a chance to go out for the night and relive the past.”
The group is busy. They perform around the country at a frantic pace. “We do 200 one nighters a year. We’ve done 50 cities in 60 days. That means flying, landing in a hotel, setting up sound, doing the show. The whole thing,” said Mattura.
Mattura said the show (they often double up with Abbamania) is the biggest musical production of its kind in the world. Stayin’ Alive is not, he stressed, a tribute band. They are bigger than that. “There are drums, guitars, two back up singers, keyboard. This is a musical rock production with all the lights, the stage backdrop, everything to make it look like the Bee Gees did when they were in concert.”
It took six months for the group to get down the vocals, mannerisms and style of the famous group. “We’ve got it right down to the breathing and synthesizing. We’ve been told we sound just like the Bee Gees do on their records.”
Monica Tietz of Abbamania said she “grew up with Abba. My mom played it all the time.”
“We dress and look on-stage like the Bee Gees looked in the last ten years. What other group has had hits in the 60’s, 70’s, 80’s, 90’s and even the 2000’s?” asked Matura. The band has been a celebrated hit everywhere it has gone, Mattura said. Even in Timmins, the home of the real Shania Twain. “They loved us.”
They are double billed with Abbamania to play the Multiplex on June 23 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $35. “We share a band including violins from the London Symphony Orchestra. There are ten of us – and about 50 musicians on stage at once,” said Mattura.