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Classic CCR revisits River Rock

Sometimes, plans that go awry end up being a big success. Take, for example, Stu Cook and Doug "Cosmo" Clifford - members of Creedence Clearwater Revisited.

Sometimes, plans that go awry end up being a big success.

Take, for example, Stu Cook and Doug "Cosmo" Clifford - members of Creedence Clearwater Revisited.

The duo - who formed the rhythm section of the legendary group Creedence Clearwater Revival - had intended just to play private parties when they got back together in 1995.

But they were convinced to perform a few concerts. And from that sprung an album and around 75 shows a year, including a stop at the River Rock Casino Resort on Sept. 6. Today, much of the time they are playing in front of fans who were not even born when they first appeared on the music scene in 1967 and then rocketed to stardom with hits including Have You Ever Seen the Rain and Proud Mary.

So, what's it like performing in front of such a generationally diverse audience? "It doesn't get any better than that," said drummer Clifford in a telephone interview from his home in Reno, Nevada.

He added the fan reaction speaks to the longevity of the music which earned the band induction to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and 82nd spot on Rolling Stone's list of the 100 greatest artists of all time.

"We have more young fans, than shall we say, I hate to use the word older. But, our generation, let's put it that way," Clifford said.

"As the circle of life continues to roll on, the ones at the upper end of the scale are falling off, and the ones at the bottom are becoming more numerous. It's a pretty amazing thing. It's probably our greatest accomplishment."

The decision to re-form the group, minus lead singer John Fogerty who went on to a solo career, stemmed from a need to play their former hits live again.

"It certainly wasn't an accident. We wanted to have a band to play the Creedence music. No one was doing it live, including John Fogerty," Clifford said. "And we heard from a lot of people that it would be great to hear it all live again."

Bassist Cook and Clifford are joined on stage by Kurt Griffey (lead guitar), Steve "The Captain" Gunner (guitar, harmonica, keyboards, backing vocals) and John "Bulldog" Tristao (lead vocals). "We were hungry to play these songs. We hadn't played them in 25 years. It seemed like a good idea. And we've been received phenomenally. So, here we are 19 years later, stumbling around the world playing rock and roll."

And that sees the group play upwards of 75 dates a year, including one in Vietnam this November.

"Initially, we were doing over 100 shows a year and I really didn't want to do that. I've been with my wife for 51 years, married 45, and she really didn't expect that I'd have a second coming," Clifford said. "When you're doing 100 shows, it means you're gone more than you're home."

On the upcoming gig in Vietnam, Clifford said it is being done as a private performance - one he is looking forward to.

"I did everything I could to stay out of there (Vietnam) 40 some years ago," he said with a laugh. "It will be pretty interesting going over there. I'm sure it will be chilling on one hand, and exciting on the other. At least they're not firing bullets at you. They're looking for a good rock and roll show."

Creedence Clearwater Revisited plays at the River Rock Casino Resort Sept. 6. Tickets are available through ticket

Photo Submitted / Creedence Clearwater Revisited will be performing at River Rock Casino on Sept. 6.;