Special Event

Croce Plays Croce 50th Anniversary Tour

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at Royal Oak Music Theatre

November 12, 2023 @ 6:00 pm $44.50, $54.50, $64.50

Presented by The Ark and AEG
Croce Plays Croce - AJ & Jim Croce

A.J. Croce has been a staple of the Americana, AAA, Blues, Top 40 and other charts throughout his own stellar career, releasing ten studio albums that effortlessly transcend multiple genres and have had 20 songs chart in the Top 20 on various radio charts. However, the 50th Anniversary Celebration of You Don’t Mess Around With Jim has prompted the most affectionate look back yet at his father’s enduring legacy.  The renewed interest leading up to the celebration of the classic album (which was recorded for only $18,000 and spent an incredible 93 weeks on the charts) has inspired a special version of A.J.’s popular ‘Croce Plays Croce’ concert series.

A.J. crisscrossed the country in 2021 with this unique concert experience to sold out shows and rave reviews: ‘As a considerate tribute, Croce Plays Croce covered just about everything a fan could expect. With A.J.’s stories and sentiment, though, it was elevated beyond a mere musical homage. Instead, the evening felt more like a family reunion.’ – Live Music News & Review

This special 50th Anniversary performance promises A.J.’s unique interpretation of Jim’s iconic You Don’t Mess Around With Jim album with a full band and visual presentation of the songs, including indelible hits, “Operator (That’s Not The Way It Feels’), “Time In A Bottle,” and others.

Jim Croce found long-overdue success in 1972 following years of struggling to make a name in the music business. That year he released his debut album, You Don’t Mess Around With Jim, which topped the Billboard Album chart for more than a month, spawning the hit singles “You Don’t Mess Around With Jim,” “Operator (That’s Not the Way It Feels),” and “Time in a Bottle”. His final studio effort, I’ve Got a Name, was released just after he passed in Fall of 1973, ten days after his death. Three more hits (“Workin’ at the Car Wash Blues,” “I’ll Have to Say I Love You in a Song” and the title song) came from that album, which reached #2 in the album charts. His records earned three #1’s and ten Top 10’s. His three classic albums (including Life and Times) amazingly were recorded in just a one-and-a-half-year period. Jim Croce was just thirty when he died but helped christen the singer/songwriter era of the early 70s, influencing generations of great songwriters to come.  He has achieved unprecedented record sales for a working-class, solo ‘folk’ artist including The Songwriter’s Hall of Fame induction, surpassing the 50 million sales mark (worldwide) with his memorable self-penned tunes gracing more than 375 compilations. His music continues to be included in major films, TV shows, and commercials including Apple’s Siri Ad, Tarantino’s Django Unchained, the X-Men franchise, Netflix’s Stranger Things and currently in George Clooney’s The Tender Bar.

A.J. was only two years old when his father was killed in a tragic airplane crash in 1973, but came to love and appreciate his dad’s blue-collar, empathetic wordplay and irresistible melodies, “just like everyone else…by listening to the albums,” says A.J. The younger Croce never performed his dad’s song live until he came across a batch of old covers Jim Croce recorded of classic and obscure blues and folk songs, including work by Fats Waller, Bessie Smith, and Pink Anderson.  “I was amazed to discover he was into stuff I was playing myself,” says A.J. The revelation eventually led the singer to conceive the ‘Croce Plays Croce’ concert experience where he delves into both artists’ mesmerizing work, their shared influences and career paths.

As the respected online music database AllMusic states in its comprehensive biography of A.J.’s legendary father: ‘Listening to the songs Croce recorded, one cannot help but wonder how far his extraordinary talents could have taken him if he would have lived longer.’  His son A.J. not only appropriately honors his father’s legacy, but further illuminates the power of the Croce pedigree with an iconic identity all his own.


November 12 2023
Doors Open:
6 PM
Show Starts:
6:00 pm
$44.50, $54.50, $64.50
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AEG Live
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Royal Oak Music Theatre
318 W 4th St
Royal Oak, MI 48067 United States
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(248) 399-2980
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