Classic rockers move Jefferson County Fair

PORT TOWNSEND — In 1965, the Kingsmen were the No. 1 touring band in the United States.

Forty years later, the Northwest garage band made famous with the most popular version of “Louie Louie” is still rocking, as it proved to fans Saturday at the Jefferson County Fair.

“That really worked up a sweat,” said Rita Berson, after dancing in front of the stage.

“I’ll feel it tomorrow.”

Berson came from Port Angeles to hear the Kingsmen, who started in Portland, Ore.

Three members of the five-piece group — Dick Peterson, Mike Mitchell and Barry Curtis — have been Kingsmen since 1963, the year “Louie Louie” came out.

Do they ever tire of playing it?

“No,” Peterson said. “It’s a lot of fun.”

Dressed in black

Fun is what both the band and the crowd had as the Kingsmen, dressed in black, went on stage.

After getting the kinks out of the borrowed sound system, they knocked out hit after hit that made them famous.

Time has not dulled their musical talents or their enthusiasm — first Peterson played keyboards for “(Gimme) Money,” sang and played the guitar for “Little Latin Lupe Lu” and “Jump Back Mamma,” then sat down at the drums.

At one point, the portable stage was literally rocking up and down as the musicians stomped their feet in time to the music.

In the bleachers, fans stood and danced, then were invited down to dance in front of the stage.

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