on December 20, 2002
Once again, the Who show just why they are the greatest Rock and Roll band to ever walk the earth. There show was simply amazing. To hear the ovation they got at the end was truly shocking. They get it started with Who Are You and Pete is just amazing in his windmilling. Entwistle keeps it all together on bass and Daltrey gets the crowd going, while Starkey does a fine job on drums. Baba O'reilly and the reaction the crowd gives after hearing the first few cords brings goosebumps to everyone. Daltrey shows hes still go it with a killer harmonica solo in the end. Behind Blue Eyes brings everyone down to tears, only to pick us up again at the end of the song. And in Wont Get Fooled Again, Townshend and Entwistle go crazy, while Daltrey wails away at our ear drums. Starkeys drum solo at the end is just fantastic, and Daltrey gives one more screaming "Yeah!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" at the end. They were simply amazing. As Billy Crystal said, they "Just blew me away. Absolutely blew me away."
on March 6, 2004
It was a night of healing. It was a night of reconcilliation. It was a night for firefighters, policeman, paramedics, musicians, actors and "Saturday Night Live" alumni alike to join together and prove New york did not grow weak after 9/11. It grew stronger and this 5 - hour concert showed those shems in the Middle East right.
Disc 1 is chock full of memorable moments. For me, the highlights were Billy Joel doing "New York State Of Mind", Eric Clapton and Buddy Guy doing a scorching rendition of the blues standard "I'm Your Hoochie Coochie Man" and Adam Sandler reviving Operaman. But as just about every reviewer pointed out, The Who blew everyone away. I think it was "Won't Get Fooled Again" that stood out. It was also a spectacular swan song for the band's bassist, John Enthwistle. This was his last live appearance ever. He died suddenly in June 2002.
Disc 2 is even better. My favorite performer here is Elton John, who delivers a powerful version of "Mona Lisas And Mad Hatters". Mick Jagger and Keith Richards do great versions of "Salt Of The Earth" and "Miss You", though I would have liked it if all of The Rolling Stones were onstage. Jimmy Falon does an interesting medley of 1980s' hits that includes "Who's Johnny", "Der Komisar", and "I Just Died In Your Arms Tonight". Paul McCartney brings down the house at the end. I really enjoyed it when Richard Gere got booed. He was asking for it.
Overall, a great concert.
on June 14, 2002
I've heard people say that this Concert for New York City is the greatest rock event since Woodstock, and I must say I totally agree, for several reasons: Concert for NYC had many more songs about freedom, a wider variety of musicians, and powerful speakers. There are also many musical treasures in this concert -- the reunion of the Who, the youthful spirit of the Backstreet Boys, the appearance of two Rolling Stones, the humor of the Operaman and the beautiful soul of Destiny's Child. First and formost, however, the greatest advantage of the Concert for NYC over Woodstock, is the presence of a Beatle. I have the VHS of Woodstock too, and I' not saying it's bad, but it was a lot different. This is people uniting to fight for peace. This is the event that shows a strong country can beat a weak country. This is our generation accomplishing the dream of America, and like McCartney, "I wil fight for the right to live in freedom." So why only 4 stars? Because of the crap -- Jay-Z's "H to the Izzo" (which, by the way, he shortened to keep the interest high) and John Fallon's "'80's Medley." What the hell was that? One more thing -- some songs on Woodstock would have worked very nicely on the Concert for NYC too (eg. Hendrix's "Star Spangled Banner.") Nevertheless, overall, this is a good buy, so go for it.
on May 18, 2002
I am a NYC Police Officer who found comfort and catharsis at this concert. I am grateful to those performers and to the Americans celebrating this music. Seeing the faces of my fellow Americans who gave themselves over to Rock and Roll for a mercurial moment made me proud yet overwhelmingly sad. I know that a lot of my fellow civil servants often have trouble reaching certain levels of emotion and, through good old fashioned Rock and Roll, we were able to let go. Listening again to those first few crashing chords from THE WHO still gives me chills. I know how every one of us was feeling at that moment.
This is not just great classic music -- this music defines us. We grew up on it. Billy Joel, Elton John, Paul McCartney, Mick Jagger, James Taylor --this music fueled our youths and made us who we are. After September 11, 01 we found new meaning to these lyrics just as we had discovered more about ourselves. We should be proud to celebrate this music, in a country that lets us play it freely and with the volume all the way up. It reminds us how powerful music can be and how healing. I replay this concert over and over. I recall the images of every wife and girlfriend, wearing their hero's hat and clutching them with all of their might, grateful for that precious moment together. I have new-found love for life, for life's simple pleasures.
Perhaps the concert's newest artist summed it as well as the veteran acts that night. In a song I have loved since I first heard it last summer, though I never fully knew what it meant until that night: "Five For Fighting", SUPERMAN -- "I wish that I could cry. Fall upon my knees. Find a way to lie. About a home I'll never see. It may sound absurd but don't be naive. Even heroes have the right to bleed. I may be disturbed but don't you concede? Even heroes have the right to dream. It's not easy to be me...."
God Bless America.
on May 1, 2002
In two dvds, totaling nearly five hours, you can see the concert for New York City. It's all there, the music, the entertainment, the speeches, the cheers, the booing (remember Richard Gere?). I only sat through about two hours worth, the night it was originally telecast live, so I was glad to be able to buy this dvd so I could see the rest. There are lots of audience reaction shots but the panning does not get in the way of good coverage of what was happening on stage. There is almost no editing as this dvd is a reproduction of the live tv broadcast. Fortunately, the director of the live event had done a great job. The sound quality is very good.
What intereted me the most were the performances of classic rock stars. Keith Richards and Mick Jagger, with a large backup band demonstrated that the Rolling Stones are shadows of their old selves. On the other hand, the Who was incredible and brought down the house. I had favorably reviewed the Who's live at Royal Albert Hall dvd and the four song performance on this dvd was another blockbuster, particularly Baba O'Riley. They still play as a solid rock band rather than as a bunch of has beens propped up by a gaggle of backup musicians. Pete Townshend is incredible on the guitar (he now plays Fender Stratocasters) and John Entwistle is better than ever on the bass. Roger Daltry remains a first rate lead singer.
John Mellencamp performed, including his song "Little Pink Houses" with the satyric lyrics "ain't that America?" The purpose of this performance, however, was to honor America and this song, nonetheless, worked really well. Paul McCartney was also on hand as one of the organizers of the event. His talents are not quite what they once were but his enthusiasm and great personality made his performance A#1 all the way!!
Like I say, I was mostly interested in the classic rock stars but, it's all here. Whatever interests you will make this dvd well worth purchasing. I highly recommend it.
on April 27, 2002
...It was several weeks later, this night, October 20, 2001, that America honored our heroes by doing something we do best, throw together memorable concerts....
David Bowie starts out playing his tune, "America" and then we move on to the heart-pumping sounds of Bon Jovi, Jay-Z, and the Goo-Goo Dolls. Next is one of New York's own, Billy Joel. He takes us through on a trip of New York, singing about his "New York State of Mind." Destiny's Child entertains us with a few light tunes, and then Eric Clapton with Buddy Guy, playing a nice-moving tune, "I'm Your Hoochie Coochie Man." Adam Sandler takes the stage next, eagerly displaying his grief over Guliani's departure and his confusion over how "Tough Osama" is "exterminating" in a cave.
Disc 2 starts off with Mike Moran offering some Irish Wisdom to his good friend, Mr. Bin Laden. The Who then delivers an absolutely amazing performance (almost half of the second disc), rocking out on three songs for over 30 minutes...a performance to go down as one of the greatest sets of all time. Disc 2 is not as jam-packed as the first, but finishes out with Paul McCartney singing several songs,including never-aging renditions of "Yesterday" and "Let It Be". The CD ends with Paul McCartney and most of the artists there that night (minus a Mick Jaggar) playing his new song "Freedom" with Eric Clapton taking numerous exhilerating solos.
A CD collection to be remembered, a collection for the masses, a collection which no other can be compared to...
It was this night the greatest from all ends of the silver screen and the LP, from the "American Bad (...)" himself to American icons such as Jerry Seinfeld, James Lipton, and Billy Joel, that these images of America took a step back to focus the light on America's NEW heros,...
on April 2, 2002
This DVD is, in a word, awesome. There isn't a better way to describe this tribute to the sacrifice of thousands of New York's Police, Port Athority, and Fire-fighters. Not only was this concert an inspirational tribute, but this night was the single most significant musical event in my life. The performances came from the heart and the faces in the audience were those of true New York hereos, and it was good to see them having a fantastic evening; one they truly deserved. The best performance, to me, was that of Daltrey, Towshend, Entwislte, and Starkey. The Who seemed to be the most enjoyed performance of the night and proved that the group still had their awe inspiring talent even while pushing sixty (except Zak Starkey, the new drummer, and son of Ringo Starr). The only reason I gave this DVD four stars instead of five, is the fact that it is edited from it's originally aired broadcast. On October 20, 2001, the fact that the show was put together in less than a month was evident. To me, it was also a testimony of the true dedication and love that the musicians showed to these great hereos; that they were willing to give whatever they could to show them a good time, even for only one night. A few moments of when the crowd got a little out of hand, or simply too rowdy for the taste of the producers, were also edited. Included were the moments when the crowd nearly booed Senator Hilary Clinton off the stage, and when they became rather upset with a comment made by Richard Gere on focusing the energy of the night not on revenge, but peace. The moment that got to me, however, was FDNY's Mike Moran and his views on what was to be done with that Osama Bin Laden. Let's just say, I can't really repeat was was said, and aparently, neither could Columbia Music Video, the production company. This DVD is almost exactly the same os the Christmas re-broadcast of the concert, which I caught on VHS (Bootleg, shh!). But, if you liked the concert at all, I recomend this DVD. It's better than no DVD at all, right? And, either way, you girls should be happy to here that Roger Daltrey hasn't lost his stunning good looks after all these years. After all, I think he's sexy and I'm at least 20 years too young! ;) Don't forget, proceeds go to the Robin Hood Relief Fund so, buy this DVD anyway!
on February 1, 2002
Let's get the bit of negativity out of the way. Editing out the chorus of boos when Hillary came on stage was unfortunate. The concert was for the heroes of New York and I wanted to see and hear exactly what transpired. Editing is one thing; Giving the customer a complete distortion of what actually occurred is something different. In a lesser complaint, I was disappointed that a part of Mike Moran's speech to Osama Bin Laden, which brought the house down, was omitted.
This is not a concert but an event for the ages. Just check out the lineup and you'll know that this is more than simply a concert. There are several performances on the DVD that do not occur on the CD. Billy Crystal is a great emcee for any event. The short films are outstanding, especially Martin Scorsese's. The comedians are great, especially Adam Sandler in classic form as 'Operaman'. The celebrities are sincere, especially Robert deNiro. The politicians are limited, which is a good thing. Except for Giuliani. As expected, the Garden erupts when Rudy comes out. The music? Eric Clapton and Buddy Guy on the same stage? Get out of town, man! Billy Joel and Elton John pairing up for 'Your Song'? Incredible. All of the musical acts were fantastic and while I didn't mind, I was curious why so many Brits were on the bill. This foolish thought was put to rest when The Who blew everyone away with an earth-shattering performance complete with British and American flags as backdrops on the giant electronic screen.
The most gripping element which transcends the entire concert is the focus on the firefighters/police/EMTs. Many of them or their families come on stage to be honored, to tell a story, or to pay tribute to their fallen comrades. The camera passes through the audience on a regular basis, with people holding up pictures of the deceased. Ultimately, the emotions of watching this concert run from laughter to tears and make it worth every penny.
on January 29, 2002
I preordered my dvd in early january, i was not fortunate enough to see this event live. Why buy this? You could cop out and only say: Mc Cartney, jagger,keif, elton john, james taylor etc. etc.. You could buy this to feel the emotions of the firefighters and police who lost so many. Listen to politicians who represent the emotion that we felt at the time. Not fighting for a partisan but for the people. Toss in a few entertainers who can make us laugh and cry. Still you have not gotten to the point of why to buy. This may be the most powerful dvd you can ever buy. You cannot watch washington cross the delaware or see lincoln give the gettysburg address. We have watched the towers be struck and tumble again and again. This concert is the beginning of the healing. We cry with our great servicemen and women We sing along to the songs that we have grown up with. We cannot, will not forget sept. 11th and if only one penny from each item purchased goes to help someone who lost a loved one. Then it is a penny well spent. GOD BLESS AMERICA and may god bless new york city. Thank you for a great piece of history and an even better night of entertainment
on January 28, 2002
This concert exemplified the magic of music as the background for Americans coming together to grieve collectively. Watching this concert will show you raw emotional energy rarely seen on television. It is a sad concert and there are many times where you can see individual instances of personal grief among the music of many different superstars. It is a long concert and well worth a viewing. Among other things, I thought Paul McCartney was cheesy and his song "Freedom" was a situation where you had an amazing song writer reacting to bad circumstances but with poor results. The Who in my opinion, stole the show and then some, they were amazing as always. I don't think Jay-Z was placed at the right time when he came out. Billy Joel was everything New York as he always has been.
The ultimate point for you, is that you should own this DVD as it is a recorded reminder of music's response to an American tragedy with an audience showing us the rawest and most powerful of human emotions out for the world to see. Some may say it was convenient for superstars to show up and act really concerned and to use their fame as a pulpit to try and relate to everyday people; however, those people are uptight, why else do you go to concerts?, to be taken away from everyday routines and tragedies of life, so a concert of this magnitude after 9/11 was exactly what the country needed.