Butch and the Buckheads to headline Moonlight and Music concert

Staff Intern

LAWRENCEVILLE - Tonight's Moonlight and Music series headliners Butch and the Buckheads have opened for big names such as Frankie Avalon and The Commodores, but lead singer and guitarist Butch Evans is pretty excited about tonight's Lawrenceville show, too.

Evans, who sings rock 'n' roll hits from the '50s, '60s and '70s with his tribute band, actually bought his first guitar four decades ago at a shop on the Lawrenceville Square. After returning from the Vietnam War, Evans got in the mood to play some music.

"I bought my first electric guitar from Bob Ward at Rhythm City in 1968," he said.

That music store is now closed, but Ward and his wife now own Sound Associates Music, located on the square. Ward fondly remembers Evans as a tall, lanky guy and praised him for his knack for promotion.

"He's always been an extremely likable guy," Ward said.

Ward and his wife plan to attend the concert and have a special request for Evans - "I hope that he does some of his own material. I want him to play the 'Villa Rica' song," Ward said.

The band - which includes Evans, Rick Dickson on lead guitar, Leon Jacobs Jr. on piano, Dave Condra on bass and Steve Pace on drums - has been playing since 1981, and has been a fixture on the Atlanta scene for the past seven years.

What the group has planned for tonight's show, Evans said, is a set of rock hits mixed with a little blues, country and bluegrass.

"We're gonna play Elvis to AC/DC, to everything in between," Evans said.

Evans said the band also plans to host a Twist competition for children, and will also choose a birthday kid to come on stage and play the washboard.

Concert-goers are encouraged to bring a picnic or eat at one of the nearby restaurants. For more information or to reserve a table, call the Gwinnett Historic Courthouse at 770-822-5450 or visit www.visitlawrenceville.com.