KC and the Sunshine Band, a pop group that reigned during the 1970s disco era, will headline the Columbus Area Arts Council’s annual Rock The Park concert.
The group, which boasted an ample brass section in its heyday, is best known for soul-tinged hits such as “Get Down Tonight,” “(Shake Shake Shake) Shake Your Booty” and “That’s the Way (I Like It).”
Organizers hope that’s the way Columbus likes it Aug. 13 at Mill Race Park.
The group, formed in 1973, took the first part of its name from lead vocalist Harry Wayne Casey’s last name (“KC”). The remainder of the group’s name, “Sunshine Band,” refers to Casey’s home state of Florida, known as the Sunshine State.
Casey, 65, still fronts a 15-member ensemble, including a brass section and dancers.
“Their producer says their concert is equivalent to a Las Vegas-style show,” said Tami Sharp, the arts council’s program director.
Although Sharp hasn’t seen KC and the Sunshine Band in concert, other entertainment booking agents she trusts have.
“They’ve said that they still sound great,” Sharp said.
The band’s tunes have been featured on more than 200 movie soundtracks. Casey also scored a solo hit with his upbeat pop tune, “Give It Up,” in 1984.
Not just a retro group, KC and the Sunshine Band saw success this spring on the Billboard Dance Club Play chart with its song, “I’m Feelin’ You.”
During its three most recent concerts, Rock the Park audiences have ranged from 6,000 to 7,000 for the Charlie Daniels Band in 2015, REO Speedwagon in 2013 and Foreigner in 2012, marking the series’ most successful run since it began in 2008. A concert was not scheduled in 2014.
In the past several years, KC and the Sunshine Band has performed at casinos, thoroughbred racetracks, performing arts centers and other venues.
“I remember I always wanted to do something that would make people forget about their problems and be happy,” Casey said on the band’s website at heykcsb.com. “I always loved music and was fortunate to grow up in a multi-ethnic area that exposed me to a lot of different cultures and music … from pop to reggae to Latin.
“I experimented at trying to put all three types of music together, and the Sunshine Sound was born.”
KC and the Sunshine Band will perform in concert Aug. 13 at Mill Race Park in downtown Columbus.
Rock the Park tickets, at $20 each in advance for general lawn seating, will go on sale soon. Day-of-event tickets will cost $25 at the gate.
Arts council staffers said on-sale information will be posted soon on their website at artsincolumbus.org.