Troy man excited to find friend has become a ‘Starr’

Published 3:00 am Friday, September 27, 2019

Imagine searching the web for information on a Beatles’ tribute band and finding a classmate’s name as the band’s Ringo Starr.

That’s just what happened to Jeremy Vinson of Troy.

Vinson is a huge fan of the Beatles and was excited to learn the Troy Arts Council was bringing “The Return” Beatles tribute band to Troy.

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“I was Googling to find out more about ‘The Return’ and saw a familiar name, Adam Thurston,” Vinson said. “Adam and I were high school classmates in Griffin, Georgia. I didn’t even know that Adam could play the drums and there he was as Ringo Starr. I couldn’t believe it. I could never have foreseen Adam in a Beatles’ tribute band.”

Vinson was front and center at the Claudia Crosby Theater Tuesday night when ‘The Return’ took the stage.

“Although I had not seen Adam since we graduated on May 31, 1996, I would have known him anywhere,” Vinson said.

But Thurston wasn’t expecting to see a former classmate dancing in the aisle but he responded to “Jeremy Vinson!” with a thumbs-up and “Griffin High School!”

All members of “The Return” are from Griffin, Georgia but Vinson said the only one he knew as a friend was Thurston.

“Adam and I used to hang out at the blowing alley on weekends,” Vinson said. “That was about the best thing – the only thing — to do in Griffin on Friday and Saturday nights. During football season, we’d go to the games on Friday night but on Saturday night, we’d be at the bowling alley.”

Vinson, laughingly, remembered his mother telling him he didn’t need to hang out at the bowling alley, that he needed to get a job.

“So, I got a job … at the bowling alley.”

Vinson said he remembered also Michale Fulop, who is George Harrison in the Beatles’ tribute band. “Michale was a grade ahead of me and it was good to see him again. But all five of us were Griffin High School graduates so, for a few minutes after the concert, it was like a class reunion,” Vinson said. “Adam and I exchanged phone numbers and we plan to keep in touch.”

Vinson said he was amazed and amused to hear his friends from Griffin, Georgia speaking with a British accent.

“I asked Adam how he learned to speak with that accent,” Vinson said. “He said it took a lot of practice to learn to speak with an accent that didn’t sound like he was a Georgia boy trying to talk with a British accent.”

Vinson said all band members were very convincing with their accents, even to a schoolmate who knew they don’t really talk like that.

“I was impressed by “The Return” and their entire show –their singing, their music and the way they portrayed the individual members of the band,” Vinson said. “The Return” was the best thing that I have seen in a long time. I hope the Troy Arts Council will bring ‘The Return’ back and that they will have more concerts like that. I especially like country music, but only the old country. But then, anything past the 1980s, well, just hang it up.”