SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — Bay Area rock institution and Rock & Roll Hall of Fame nominees The Doobie Brothers on Tuesday announced the band’s 50th anniversary tour featuring a reunion with singer/keyboardist Michael McDonald.
The band — featuring key members Tom Johnston, Pat Simmons and John McFee — brought McDonald onstage as a special guest during their Nov. 18th performance at the Ryman Auditorium, playing an encore of the hit song “Takin’ it to the Streets” before announcing that the singer would be joining the band for a 30-date tour in 2020.
Founded in San Jose in 1970 by guitarist, singer and principle songwriter Johnston, the Doobie Brothers built a strong regional following with their mix of R&B, folk, blues and rock before scoring such early hits as “Listen To The Music,” “Jesus Is Just Alright With Me,” “Takin’ It To The Streets” and “China Grove” from their seminal albums Toulouse Street and The Captain and Me. The band has recently been touring a special show during which they perform those two classic albums in their entirety.
When health problems sidelined Johnston in 1975, the Doobie Brothers brought veteran session singer and keyboard player Michael McDonald to join the band. The group’s sound took a turn from the guitar-focused boogie of their early efforts to a more sophisticated style of blue-eyed soul anchored by McDonald’s distinctive vocals and keyboards and former Steely Dan guitarist Jeff “Skunk” Baxter’s stinging leads with such hits as “Long Train Running,” “What A Fool Believes,” “It Keeps You Runnin'” and “Minute By Minute.”
The tour will mark the first time McDonald has joined the band on the road in 25 years. The announced 30-date tour will include a visit to the Bay Area for a hometown celebration on September 12, 2020, at the Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View. Tickets to for the Doobie Brothers 50th Anniversary Tour will go on sale beginning Friday, December 6th at 10am at LiveNation.com.