Legendary blues musician Buddy Guy was honored by the Kennedy Center back on December 3rd, but unless you were in the building that night, you probably haven’t seen the amazing show that was heavily geared towards the music we all love.
We reported on it back on the day of the event, based on a few eyewitness reports, but after the show aired on public television tonight, it was easy to realize just how proud and honored these these musicians felt.
The musical tribute to Guy included Gary Clark Jr, Bonnie Raitt, Jeff Beck, Beth Hart, Jimmy Vaughn, and Tracy Chapman. The all-star band had the Kennedy Center crowd rocking to the blues. It was clear that every musician in the audience loved the legendary blues musician dearly. As the camera scanned around room, it was clear the crowd was having a great time, especially when Beth Hart was displaying her powerful vocals.
After a quite humorous roast of David Letterman, it was time for Led Zeppelin.
During the introduction, the announcer described Robert Plant as being hooked on American blues as a teen, something that remains true 40 years later. The Led Zeppelin tribute included Lenny Kravitz, The Foo Fighters and Kid Rock, but this portion of the show was stolen by Ann & Nancy Wilson of Heart. They brought their “A” game and launched into an epic version of Led Zeppelin’s classic hit “Stairway To Heaven”, complete with an orchestra a choir. It was a moving tribute that brought Robert Plant to tears.
After the gala event, the band appeared on the Letterman show as they talked about the influence that blues had on them and how it shaped their careers. Jimmy Page said he and childhood friend Jeff Beck would sit around and listen to Buddy Guy, Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf and Sonny Boy. “The Guitars were out of this world,” lamented Page.