Sunday, June 16, 2024

Grammy Awards’ MusiCares Virtual Fundraiser Will Revisit Years of Legendary Performances Never Seen Before by Public


EXCLUSIVE Every year, the Grammy Awards‘ charity MusiCares stages their annual fundraiser on the Friday before the awards, honoring a superstar. Something like 3,000 people jam the LA Convention Center for dinner and a concert that’s off the hook, the honoree’s peers perform their songs.

Only the people in the Hall get to see and hear these amazing one of a kind moments performed by Bruce Springsteen, Sting, Bob Dylan, Aretha Franklin, Stevie Wonder, Lionel Richie, Neil Young, Neil Diamond, Tom Petty, Bono, Don Henley, Billy Joel, Paul McCartney, Dolly Parton, Barbra Streisand, and so on, honored as Person of the Year. Sometimes it’s even been a group, like Aerosmith.

But this year because of the pandemic there is no one Person of the Year. Not yet announced, I’m told that acting Recording Academy chief Harvey Mason Jr. and his team have come up with a Greatest Hits gala idea that will revisit all those amazing performances. The date would be January 29th, as the Grammys are on CBS January 31st.

The main thing is that everyone who loves music gets behind this and makes the virtual fundraiser the biggest ever. Musicians everywhere are suffering from lack of work, and in some cases, COVID, as well as myriad health issues. MusiCares comes to the rescue of all these musicians who don’t have resources. These may be very well known names who never made a lot of money– but whose records we all love– to sidemen, studio people, live performers who depend on gigs 300 days each year.

When Harvey and his team make their official announcement, I hope the show will be available to people around the world who want to donate funds to this incredibly important cause. I think we will see a show just as good as the annual live one, with the consequences of giving so much more pressing now.

PS I really hope one of the clips they use is Jennifer Hudson and a gospel choir singing Neil Diamond’s “Holly Holy.” I’ve never forgotten it.


Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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