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Popular teen groups will 'Rally by the River'

LFO and PYT, both young bands that have opened for Britney Spears, headline the event.

By BARBARA L. FREDRICKSEN

© St. Petersburg Times, published April 28, 2000


Sims Park will be teeny bopper heaven from 2 to 7 p.m. Saturday when the popular boy trio LFO (Lyte Funky Ones) and the phenomenal, barely teen girl group from Tampa, PYT (Pretty Young Things), take the stage for the Rally by the River concert.

Opening acts are the rapping police officer known as Que Ball and the new girl group I-5.

Both LFO and PYT have opened for mega-star Britney Spears on tour recently, and both have been featured in numerous teen magazines. PYT, whose members are 13 and 14 years old, is featured in the April issue of Jump magazine's "Grrrl Talk."

LFO recently headlined its own U.S. tour and has had several songs on the Billboard Magazine charts, most recently Summer Girl and Girl on TV.

PYT's big hits include the R&B/pop-tinged songs DFW (Down for Whatever) and Something More Beautiful.

Both groups are said to be part of a new, tamer and more romantic movement in music that is a response to the violence and often obscene lyrics of gansta rap and some hip-hop. Both feature close harmony, no profanity and lively, upbeat choreography.

LFO, which frequently mixes nonsensical pop culture images into its lyrics, has taken some lumps from critics, who say the result is inane: "Stayed all summer, then went back home/Macaulay Culkin was in Home Alone," or "Fell deep in love but now we ain't speakin'/Michael J. Fox was Alex P. Keaton," for example.

LFO members Rich Cronin and Devin Lima are from Boston and Brad Fischetti is from New York, but they all now live in Orlando. PYT's members are all from the Tampa Bay area, two of them with Pasco County ties. Lydia Bell lives in Lutz, and Ashley Niven's family lives in Tampa but has a cottage in Odessa. Tracy Williams lives on Davis Islands; Lauren Mayhew lives in Carrollwood.

The rally will also have a simulated rock climbing wall and vendors of food and souvenirs. Sponsors are the Downtown Community Cooperative and the city. Members of the River Ridge High School Future Business Leaders of America are selling tickets and will get a portion of any profits from the concert.

At a glance

  • WHAT: Rally by the River, with LFO, PYT, I-5 and Que Ball

  • WHERE: Sims Park, New Port Richey

  • WHEN: 2 to 7 p.m. Saturday

  • TICKETS: $20 reserved seating, $15 general admission. Call (727) 842-8066 or go by the Downtown Community Cooperative office in New Port Richey City Hall or any TicketMaster outlet

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