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Creedence, revisited: Band to play at Shooting Star Casino this Friday

Creedence Clearwater Revisited performs Friday at Mahnomen’s Shooting Star Casino. The lineup includes (left to right) Kurt Griffey, John Tristao, Stu Cook, Doug Clifford and Steve Gunner. SUBMITTED PHOTO

It’s been more than 20 years since Stu Cook and Doug “Cosmo” Clifford — who formed the rhythm section of the legendary Rock & Roll Hall of Fame band Creedence Clearwater Revival, as its bass player and drummer, respectively — first began contemplating a relaunch of their musical careers.

The band affectionately known as “CCR” to their legion of fans had broken up in 1972, with its members moving on to a variety of other pursuits. Cook and Clifford had each been through a fairly lengthy period of musical inactivity when fate stepped in.

“I moved to Lake Tahoe in 1995, and Doug had already been living there for many years,” said Cook in a recent telephone interview. “We started hanging out together and jamming a couple of times a week.”

“We never really had any intention of playing for the public,” he added. “But a friend wanted to promote a couple of concerts.”

The response was positive, so the duo began looking for a few other talented musicians to fill out the ranks of the band that would be dubbed “Creedence Clearwater Revisited.”

That decision proved to be one of the smartest moves he’s made to date, Cook admitted. “It was definitely the accidental career,” he laughed.

The group will bring the original CCR catalog of hits to Mahnomen’s Shooting Star Casino this Friday, July 25 for an 8 p.m. concert.

Tickets start at $20 and are on sale now. They can be purchased by phone at 1-800-313-SHOW (7469), online at, or via the “Buy Tickets” tab on the Shooting Star Casino page at

Since its formation in 1995, Creedence Clearwater Revisited has created a whole new generation of fans for the original group’s brand of Southern-flavored roots rock — which pretty much makes up the band’s entire repertoire.

“Why would we want to try to add to that catalog?” Cook says. “These are the songs that people love to hear.”

And so far, they haven’t grown tired of playing iconic hits like “Bad Moon Rising,” “Proud Mary,” “Fortunate Son” and “Have You Ever Seen the Rain.”

“The fans enjoy hearing (the hits), and we enjoy playing them… we like entertaining,” Cook said. “We consider ourselves journeymen professional musicians. We just have to play the songs to the top of our abilities. It’s a matter of pride, and we take it seriously.

“But we also like to have a lot of fun,” he added, noting with a touch of self-deprecating humor, “It’s a mix of immature behavior and professional technique.”

The group typically spends anywhere from 120 to 150 days a year on tour, with some tour segments being longer than others. Cook said he actually prefers the longer stints on the road.

“It’s less traveling back and forth,” he explained. “I prefer to get it done and have my time off.”

Though his musical career has allowed him to visit and perform in countries on just about every continent — excepting only Africa and Antarctica — Cook said there are still a few places where he’d like to play.

“I’d love to play in Italy, and I wouldn’t mind playing in South Africa either,” he admitted. “We get to see a lot of the world when we do these tours abroad. It’s a cultural fringe benefit.”

Still, it’s always nice to play to audiences a little closer to home.

“Creedence has great fans everywhere,” Cook said. “We’re fortunate that we’re still having fun. As long as that is on the top of the list (of benefits), we’ll keep doing it.

“It beats having a day job,” he laughed.

Follow Detroit Lakes Newspapers reporter Vicki Gerdes on Twitter at @VickiLGerdes.

Vicki Gerdes

Staff writer at Detroit Lakes Newspapers for the past 16 years, currently editor of the entertainment and community pages as well as covering city council and the Lake Park-Audubon School Board. Living in DL with my cat, Smokey.

(218) 844-1454