The Oak Ridge Boys perform about 150 nights a year, and this year marks the 40th year they have been performing together.
In that time, they have played a lot of county and state fairs, said Richard Sterban, bass singer for the band, by telephone from Nashville three weeks before the Evergreen State Fair. And fairs are a natural fit for the country music legends, he said.
“The Oak Ridge Boys are very much a family act,” he said, baritone voice reflecting the role of bass that he sings in the quartet. “There’s nothing more family-oriented than a state fair or county fair. It’s a natural for us.”
The band has been traveling a lot, and sometimes they are so busy traveling and performing that they don’t get to see much of where they are. But on a recent swing through South Dakota, the band got a first-ever chance to visit Little Big Horn, scene of Custer’s Last Stand, which Sterban enjoyed.
And before coming to the Pacific Northwest, they plan to enjoy a performance and visit to a very large seafood festival in Maryland.
One of the places they like to visit the most is the Pacific Northwest, said Sterban.
“You live in one of the most beautiful parts of this country,” he said. “We love the Pacific Northwest. We’ve played the fair on numerous occasions and it’s beautiful, with the tall pine trees.”
When they come to the Evergreen State Fair for their performance Monday, Aug. 26, they will play lots of fan favorites.
“We are going to do all the hits,” said Sterban. “We’ll do ‘Elvira,’ and we are going to do ‘Thank God for Kids’ and ‘Leaving Louisiana in the Broad Daylight.”
In addition to the hits, they will play some of their more recent material.
“We know people want to hear the hits, and we like to play them, but we also like doing new music,” Sterban said. “It puts new energy into the show and into us.”
Also, the band will play some of the gospel music for which they are renowned, and will do some of their patriotic material, too.
“We love this country, and we like to do songs that honor our veterans,” the singer said.
He hopes that long-time fans will be there, and that those who are just getting to know the band will attend, as well.
“It’s a great night of good country music and good family entertainment,” he said.