Stephen Stills, John Fogerty, Ann Wilson Perform at Free Concert

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Stephen Stills performing “For What It’s Worth,” Dec. 10, 2022

Stephen Stills gave an increasingly rare on stage performance on Saturday (Dec. 10, 2022), when he played his Buffalo Springfield classic “For What It’s Worth.” The legendary guitarist and songwriter was a late addition to an all-star lineup at San Francisco’s Bill Graham Civic Auditorium that also included John Fogerty, Buddy Guy, Ann Wilson, Kenny Wayne Shepherd, and Mike Mills of R.E.M. They were all part of a free concert organized by businessman Jim Irsay who has been displaying parts of his collection of music memorabilia in many U.S. cities throughout the year. Watch several of the performances from the 26-song set below.

Jim Irsay’s passion for rock music, American history and pop culture led him to assemble a robust collection of historic and culturally significant artifacts over several decades that together make up The Jim Irsay Collection. If his name doesn’t sound familiar, it might be because you don’t follow the NFL. Since 1997, Irsay has been the principal owner of the league’s Indianapolis Colts. The businessman has been associated with the team since his father, the late Robert Irsay, acquired the Baltimore Colts. (In 1984, the younger Irsay became the team’s General Manager shortly after the franchise moved to Indianapolis. When the senior Irsay died in 1997, his son won a legal battle against his stepmother for ownership of the team.)

At the San Francisco concert, the classic rock stars joined the Jim Irsay Band (featuring Kenny Aronoff, Tom Bukovac, Mike Mills, Danny Nucci, Michael Ramos, Carmella Ramsey, Kenny Wayne Shepherd and Mike Wanchic) to perform some of their legendary songs. The audience must have been delighted to see Stills, 77, take lead vocals on “Carry On,” which he wrote and recorded for the CSNY album, Déjà vu. He was introduced by Shepherd, his bandmate in The Rides.

And after a longer than usual intro, he performed an extended solo on a bluesy version of his 1966 favorite, “For What It’s Worth.”

John Fogerty got a huge ovation when he took the stage for a six-song set towards the end of the program. Watch him perform three favorites associated with Creedence Clearwater Revival…

Ann Wilson sang covers from Led Zeppelin (“Rock and Roll,” “Immigrant Song”), and Van Morrison (“Into the Mystic”).

Her performance of “Gimme Shelter” closed the show. Earlier, she dedicated a performance of Fleetwood Mac’s “The Chain” to the “dear, dearest Miss Christine McVie,” who had died recently.

Thanks to Ted Silverman and mrodin12 for the videos.

The Jim Irsay Collection features musical instruments and items owned by some of the greatest artists in music history, including Bob Dylan, The Beatles, Prince, Eric Clapton, Elton John, Jerry Garcia, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison and Kurt Cobain, as well as autographed photos, handwritten lyrics, and other historical music memorabilia. The collection also includes U.S. Presidential artifacts, important original documents from American history and unique items, such as a 1953 Jackie Robinson bat, Muhammad Ali’s 1974 “Rumble in the Jungle” championship belt and the original scroll of Jack Kerouac’s seminal novel, On the Road.

Related: Stills performed with Neil Young and several members of the Heartbreakers at his 2018 benefit concert

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  1. Da Mick
    #1 Da Mick 12 December, 2022, 20:27

    I have to wonder if some of these folks were having trouble hearing themselves, as while Stephen Stills was just so tragically bad (and seemed to be distractedly fuddling with his monitor and a stage hand during his whole performance), even Fogerty started out being both sharp and flat at times, but then magically seemed to right himself. That’s what happens when you can’t hear yourself on stage. Even Ann Wilson, was a bit pitchy on “Immigrant Song” which makes me feel like there must have been monitor problems. If that indeed was the case, these techs owe these veteran musicians a huge apology as they trudged on doing their best, with their royal reputations on the line. Makes you realize how flawlessly so many of these big shows with multiple performers come off without a hitch. The whole aspect of monitors in performance is pretty much everything when you’re up there. As unprofessional as it may seem, I wouldn’t blame any of them for just stopping if they couldn’t hear themselves, because Stills’ performance if the result, and that’s just not right. For that matter, having the background singers mixed so far back from Stills’ voice in “Carry On” was a joke. as he’s singing a part of a vocal blend. They weren’t doing him any favors treating him like a lead vocal on that song, and any sound person should have known that, for crying out loud. As good as the intentions may have been for the whole thing, the personnel running sound behind the scenes was way too amateur for this level of a show. I’m surprised some of these folks don’t sue.

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