Good News comes from all walks of life today, but it starts with one of the most epic concerts I’ve ever seen.
The concert for Sandy Relief, or the “12-12-12” show at Madison Square Garden Wednesday night, was fantastic, if a little over-packed with old, white dudes who kicked ass through the 70s, 80s, 90s, and the Aughts, and are still rocking in the ’10s (can we call this decade the ’10s? Good).
It went on for about 43 hours (OK, about six), and was filled with highlights and a few lowlights, and raised $30 million from ticket sales and corporate donations so far (they haven’t tallied all the Internet and phone pledges yet).
A few quick-hit thoughts after watching the show:
— Best performances were Bruce Springsteen (never lets a crowd down), Alicia Keys, the Stones, and, much to my surprise, Chris Martin of Coldplay. He did a great duet with Michael Stipe (who looked awful but sounded great), had some funny jokes, and truly seemed honored to be there.
— Worst performances? Adam Sandler blaspheming by doing a version of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallejulah” was terrible. I thought the skit with Seth Meyers was awful. And, I expect to get hit by lightning after writing this, but I wasn’t thrilled by Paul McCartney’s performance. He did two “Wings” songs, for God’s sake. “Live and Let Die” was good, as was “Blackbird,” but I dunno, I just didn’t love Sir Paul on this night.
— Wow, was Roger Daltrey’s chest waxed. But he looked and sounded great. Keith Richards, well, I’ve seen corpses that looked better.
— Maybe I’m sensitive as a native New Yorker, but it pissed me off how many celebs claim to be “New Yorkers.” Chelsea Clinton (from Arkansas) and Sandler (from New Hampshire) both claimed to be natives on the show. Just wrong.
— Kanye West’s leather skirt. Ummm, yeah. Great fashion choice. As someone on Twitter said, “Leave him alone. He came straight to the concert from his field hockey game.”
— Crazy that Keys was the only female on the entire show (which someone joked was “a five-hour Cialis commercial.). They couldn’t have gotten Pink, or Sheryl Crow, or Gwen Stefani?
**Next, I have the perfect gift for you if you or someone you love loves beer, and loves keeping their hands warm.
Heard about these on the radio, and then had to see them for myself: An Icelandic company makes beer mittens, so you can hold your Budweiser and keep your digits warm all at the same time.
Bloody brilliant. I don’t even drink beer and I want a pair.
**Finally, one of the good guys of the NFL is Andre Johnson, the world-class wide receiver for the Houston Texans. Every year, Johnson takes a group of at-risk Houston kids and gives them a shopping spree at Toys R’ Us. They have 80 seconds to each grab as much as they can and shove it into a shopping cart.
This year’s spree came to $19,521, which means those kids knew exactly where the big ticket items were. Bravo, Andre. (That’s him with the receipt, above)