Greetings everyone and welcome to another look inside some of the entertainment industry’s coolest events. This blog, is dedicated to the recent MusiCares Benefit Concert and Red Carpet, that I covered and attended. Back in 2011, I covered the The 7th Annual MusiCares MAP Fund benefit, honoring Depeche Mode frontman Dave Gahan and Vans Warped Tour founder Kevin Lyman. http://tinyurl.com/793huyd
The MusiCares Foundation, was established in 1989 by The National academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. The organizations goal, is to help struggling musicians in crisis with the health and welfare of their community. In 2004, the Musicians Assistance Program (MAP Fund) to help musicians with drug rehabilitation. They also help to provide sober living and safe harbor rooms backstage at concerts.
Rock stars and music fans packed Club Nokia on Monday Night May,12, for a Live Benefit Concert to Raise Funds for MusiCares’ Addiction Recovery Services. The concert honored Grammy winner and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member, Ozzy Osbourne, and Jeff Greenberg, owner/CEO of the Village studio.
Before the concert a dinner was held inside the club, while the performers and honorees of the evening walked the Red Carpet and posed for the photographers, after being interviewed by Video Journalists. Ozzy, walked the carpet with his daughter Kelly. The two shared some touching and candid moments on the carpet. Kelly was quoted in a video interview that was shown to the audience, now having the father she always dreamed of, since Ozzy, got sober. The Red Carpet, didn’t just include the evenings two honorees but also brought rare red carpet appearances by presenter Joe Walsh (Eagles and also a recovering addict) and special guest guitarist Slash (Guns ‘N Roses / Velvet Revolver) along with Osbourne’s solo touring band members and celebrity guests. Fans lined up on sidewalks behind the Red Carpet, trying to get pictures of the stars. Some lucky ones even got memorabilia signed.
After the carpet the show kicked off with MusiCares chair Bill Silva, announcing that the MAP Fund program, that has already devoted $10 million to addiction services designed to help musicians get sober. Bill, then delivered the evening first joke saying “and most of them are in this room”. After the short speech, a video tribute to was shown of the late Adam Goldstein (DJ AM) who lost his battle with addiction, on August 28, 2009. After that, it was time for the concert portion of the evening to start.
The evening’s first performer was Los Angeles singer – songwriter Beth Hart, who opened with a song from her called “Immortal”. She followed up with a bluesy soulfully version of Ozzy’s ‘Changes”. Hart reflected on stage that the first time she heard it she didn’t know it was Ozzy. Beth’s set, was followed by Grammy Winner, Keb’ Mo’, who honored Jeff Greenberg, with his set. Greenberg during his speech stated, “We’re all here because we love music, music is the center core of our lives. And this is where we take care of the people who make the music”.
The next music set of the night might have been the most anticipated. It was a short but powerful four song rare acoustic set by fellow Rock and Roll Hall of Fame members Metallica. As the band took to the stage the once seated crowed in the balcony rose to their feet. The band hit the stage and sat on stools, as James teased the crowd with a the opening chords of “Stairway To Heaven”, before opening up with Earth’s “I Just want To Celebrate”. A song, which they also played acoustically at Neil Young’s Bridge School Benefit in 2007. The band followed up with another cover deep purples “When A Man Cries”. Metallica fans could be heard crying for them to play some Metallica, but those fans must have forgotten James Hetfield, was honored by MusiCares himself in 2006. The band then played The Beatles “In My Life”. For their final song they paid tribute to Ozzy, by covering his “Diary of a Madman”.
Joe Walsh presented Ozzy, with the Stevie Ray Vaughan Award. Then it was time for the man of the evening to hit the stage. Ozzy, kicked off his set with “I Don’t Know” with Janes Addiction guitarist Dave Navarro playing with him for his entire set. “Suicide Solution”, a song that tells of Ozzy’s battle with alcoholism was up next. Ozzy, jumped around on stage clapped his hands liker it was the 70’s. You could clearly see that his sobriety helped his vocals and live show. “Iron Man” and “Crazy Train” sounded amazing. But the true highlight of the evening, was the final song of the night, Black Sabbath’s anthem “Paranoid” where Ozzy, was joined on stage by Slash and Billy Morrison.
On a personal note. I have witnessed first hand how important the MAP Fund is. I’ve spent a lifetime surrounded by and being a fan of musicans. If we had programs like the MAP Fund and MusiCares my generation might have not lost people like Kurt Cobain, Layne Staley and Bradley Nowell. My parents generation might not have lost Jim Morrison, Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin. For more information on the MusiCares program check them out here: http://www.grammy.org/musicares/recovery