LONG BEACH - Fans of 1970s funk music and area residents can "take a little trip, take a little trip" down memory lane Saturday as they listen to headlining entertainment from the Lowrider Band at the 25th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Peace and Unity Celebration at MLK Park, 1550 Lemon Ave.
Band members Howard Scott and Harold Brown first started playing together in Long Beach in the 1960s and had their greatest success as members of the band War. That group rolled out hits such as "Lowrider," "Cisco Kid," and "Why Can't We Be Friends," before Scott, Brown and Lee Oskar left the band. They unsuccessfully tried in court to keep the name War and instead settled for the name of their biggest-selling single.
The Lowrider Band has played many gigs in Long Beach over the years, including previous MLK celebrations, and remains popular for its unique blend of rock, funk, jazz, rhythm and blues and Latin flavors.
Other performers on the main stage will be Sax N Blues and Long Beach City College singer/songwriter Halle Johnson.
There will also be performances by the King Park Children Dancers, Grace Poly Choral Assembly, Lion of Judah, Shy Denee, Magee & Roach, Joseph Gordon and Mariah Avala.
Donaldo Reed will emcee.
The event is free and runs from 12:30 to 5 p.m.
There will also be free health and social service information, food and merchandise vendors, and teen and kids areas with free carnival rides.
Information is available at 562-570-6816.
Another event on the Peace Week calendar will be at 4:30 p.m. Thursday at the MLK Park Social Hall.
Entitled "A Day in the Life of Martin Luther King Jr., Through the Eyes of Our Community Leaders," the event will feature personal stories from residents who walked or interacted with King that will be shared with youth and younger adults. It will continue with a workshop to foster new ideas for positive changes in the neighborhood in what organizers call a "Restorative Justice Circle format."