Country legend and Hall of Fame musician Johnny Lee played to a welcoming crowd in the Holiday Bay Room at the Lodge on Sunday, August 23. Johnny performed many of his classic country hits, including “Hey Bartender,” “Lookin’ For Love,” “Pickin’ Up Strangers” and “The Yellow Rose of Texas.” He also performed songs from his latest album, “Greatest Hits and More.”
“I am a Texas-born gal, and Johnny Lee sang one of my favorite songs, ‘The Yellow Rose of Texas,’” says Irma Mascorro. “It brought back a lot of nice memories for me!”
The most enthusiastic response from the audience came when Johnny belted out his 1980 hit, “Lookin’ for Love.” Ron Martel says, “The song ‘Lookin’ for Love’ was the song that introduced us to country music in the days of ‘Urban Cowboy.’ Johnny Lee has not lost that rich baritone, and his talented band was extremely entertaining.”
Part of the entertainment included Johnny telling jokes and stories between songs. “He’s has quite a character,” says concert goer Kellie Welty.
Johnny played for more than two hours without a break in the entire set. When he finished, he left the audience wanting more. “Start all over,” yelled one audience member.
According to Lighthouse Director Jeff Main, the concert was sold out. He says, “We added 11 additional chairs so that we could accommodate the residents who purchased tickets on the day of the show.”
Tammy Revard says, “I went with a group of friends, and we all truly enjoyed the concert. It was a fun mix of great songs that were fun to sing along to, and he also told a few jokes. Johnny Lee was very cordial to the audience after the show. It was nice to have such a great performer here in Canyon Lake for such a reasonable price.”
Before the show, many of the concert goers dined at the Lighthouse Restaurant, taking advantage of the special 10 percent dinner discount that was included with the ticket purchase. Even though six Lighthouse employees who were scheduled to work on the day of the concert didn’t show up for various reasons, diner Debbie Cocanour says, “The service was great – we didn’t even notice they were short-handed. He (Jeff) did a great job!”
Jeff says, “For the most part, things ran very smoothly considering the circumstances. For a Sunday, the Lighthouse sales trend was highly above average.”
A VIP bar was stationed on the patio outside the Holiday Bay Room to accommodate VIP ticket holders. The VIP bar included a selection of alcohol that was not available to General Admission tickets holders.
The General Admission bar sold beer and wine only. Jeff says, “We sold a lot more than the $2,000 we projected in concert liquor sales from the VIP and General Admission bars.”
VIP ticket holders also had a separate entrance from the General Admission ticket holders, and access to patio seating where they could mix and mingle before and after the concert.
The concert was promoted by Doug Schultz, who has more than 30 years’ experience in his professional field. He has produced more than 2,000 concert events and worked with over 5,000 national acts. For the past 11 years, he has worked as a concert manager for LFM radio stations in San Diego.
Doug is a Canyon Lake resident and a personal friend of Johnny Lee. He promoted this concert free of charge for the Canyon Lake community, and Johnny discounted his usual fee from $10,000 to $15,000 down to $5,500 as a personal favor to Doug.
Doug says, “It was a pleasure to work with Chris Mitchell (CLPOA General Manager) and Jeff Main. It was extraordinarily easy to work with both of them through this process, and I would do it again.”
Before the concert, Doug and his wife Anneda, along with CLPOA Director Bruce Yarbrough and friends, treated Johnny to a tour of Canyon Lake on Bruce’s boat. During the show, Johnny took a few moments to speak about what a wonderful place he thinks Canyon Lake is.
“If you don’t love Canyon Lake, you have stinky feet and don’t love Jesus,” he said during the show.
After the concert, Johnny autographed CDs and photographs for the fans who purchased them at the meet-and-greet table. Ticket holders also had the opportunity to take photos with him free of charge. One resident had Johnny sign the sleeve of the shirt she was wearing, the same shirt Johnny signed at a concert 20 years earlier!
“We had a great time at the concert. It was even better than we expected,” says Margie Jennings. “I am glad we were able to support our community and to see so many people enjoying themselves. Thanks to Doug Schultz and the POA for arranging such a great event!”
The next concert at the Lodge is scheduled for Saturday, September 5, when Season 7 “American Idol” winner David Cook will perform at 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. Cook’s recording career has produced chart-topping hits, a platinum album and multiple platinum singles. VIP tickets are selling for $50, General Admission Tier II tickets for $35; and General Admission Tier III for $25.
Doug Schultz is promoting these shows free of charge also. To purchase tickets, visit www.canyonlakelighthouse.com.