An off-key PHL Love concert

Hate to criticize what is done for charity, but the Thursday-night, one-hour concert fund-raiser had a slap dash feel to it, and low production values, for the most part.

Patti LeBelle kicks it, of course

Excluded from that criticism is Godmother of Soul, Patti LaBell, who had backup singers and six musicians who joined her for a great rendition of “A Change is Gonna Come.” She did everything but kick off her shoes, a once-trademark she did during shows.

She was introduced by DJ Questlove, who was featured in the all-Philly show. I like Questlove’s attachment to his city even though I just do not get what he does when he is mixing music. Some people must get it, because he is a star.

For me, the two biggest surprises were stars just speaking love for Philly and asking for money for the PHLCOVID19FUND charity.

There was former Phillie, and World Series champ Shane Victorino, the Flying Hawaiian, throwing love at his adopted city, where he will always be welcome. He was followed by Tug McGraw’s son, country star Tim McGraw, wearing a Phillies hat. He confessed he never spent much time in Philly, but had come to love it through his father.

The Phillies cap reminded me of a controversy involving his father, after he had reunited with the son he had abandoned after a spring training fling. After winning the World Series with the Phillies, Tug wore a Mets cap for a magazine cover, I think it was TV Guide and it did not go down well in Philly.

Neither did my column in which I called him a deadbeat dad, because he was, never having supported or communicated with his son. A much bigger man than his father, Tim forgave Tug, and Tug sued me. He wanted money and an apology. He got neither because you don’t apologize for the truth and my paper, the Daily News had big balls.

The concert opened with former blue-eyed soul star (and Temple alum) Daryl Hall (his name mis-spelled in the closing credits) singing his “I’m in a Philly Mood,” in what seemed like a home studio with blurry visuals. Also blurry was a pitch by Bobby Rydell, who should have been invited to sing in preference to several performers I never heard of.

DJ Jazzy Jeff talked about being a virus survivor, but the only trace of Will Smith, his one-time partner, was in a Questlove mix. The Bacon brothers — Kevin and Michael — asked for money without performing. Jerry Blavat noted that he and Rydell are in a high-risk group.

While disappointing, the main goal was to encourage people to donate to the fund, and I will encourage you to go to PHLCOVID19FUND.ORG and do just that.

13 thoughts on “An off-key PHL Love concert”

    I didn’t watch the fund raiser, therefore, I don’t know about the quality of the production. I do know that every musician that’s worth anything, has their own sound booth or room in their house. In today’s age of electronics, “studio musician” is just a term. The better you are, the better the home equipment. Home studios have been around for a long time. My cousin had a high quality sound room in his basement. I don’t know if he paid for it or NFL Films paid for it. ( can you say “PHIL a DEL phia” )
    DON’T FORGET to get out there and thank a Vet !

    1. Tony, I want to thank you, and everyone else here, who honorably served our country. I also want to express my thanks to all of those who died while trying to protect us.

      In addition I want to thank my late father who served in Europe during WWII. I love you pop. I will never forget the times we had together.

      1. Tony, a beautiful tribute to your dad. And my thanks to my late father, a WWII Army vet and POW (captured at The Bulge), and to my sons, Vincent III (four-year Army vet), and John (a serving captain in the PANG Medical Corps, at the VA in Spring City). I did six years (Air Force), four active, Russian translator, in the middle of the Cuban Missile Crisis. Seems like yesterday… My thanks and prayers to all who serve and served. Freedom is not free.

  2. Stu, if anything your criticism of the PHL Love concert was kind. I changed channels and returned rather than endure some of the off-key performances. The sponsors’ and participants’ hearts are in the right place and this concert supports an important cause. The producers let them down big time. I thought of you as I listened and you didn’t let me down. Keep telling it like it is.

    To all of you avid followers, (studism ?)
    Because we have an outlet here, with Stu and you all, I’m proud to have served my country, and I’m sure that all of you that have Veterans in your life, know of that feeling.
    I make sure that the Veterans that lay in the cemetery where my wife lies, also a Vet, have the correct Flag Holder and Flag for Memorial Day. Should any of you need a Flag Holder and or Flag, let me know, and I’ll take care of it. My secretary, S. Bykofsky, will be the middleman for the e-mails. Congrats Stu. I just promoted you .
    BTW: in case you didn’t know it. Stu has a great respect for our Veterans.
    HOORAH !
    stay well,

  4. This Sunday the National Memorial Day Concert airs live 8-930pm PBS WHYY. This year not only the armed forces will be honored, but also the front lines of the Covid-19 crisis. Always a must see!
    I wish to salute my three deceased brothers for their service to our great country. Mom was so proud, when it was my turn, she sent my picture to the local newspaper. It read ‘Fourth Wetten Serves his Country.’
    Stan’s in Holy Sepulchre, Dave in New London Cemetery in Ohio. And brother Bob is in Indian Town Gap National in Annville, Pa. It’s Taps that brought tears to my eyes at their funerals. So will this Sunday’s concert.
    And Tony I will hopefully soon get to Old Cathedral to visit my GG Grandfather with you! Thanks.

    1. Tom: for your brothers (and others who gave their lives for the country), I’ll quote President Reagan: “Where did we find such men?”

      1. HAPPY SATURDAY !!!
        Memorial Day is when we honor all of those that went before us. Your parents did more than their duty, in raising their sons, who gladly served this great country.
        I looked at find a grave, Holy Sepulchre. I noticed that your brother does not have a Flag Holder for his two services. We’ll have to do something about that !

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