I keep discovering gems from the Friends & Lovers Reunion Concert in 1988! Here's one featuring my good friend Kenny Ard on piano, collaborating with me for the first time. He had moved to San Diego from New Orleans just a year before when we met at the F&L Concert in 1987. From the very beginning, working with him has always been an honor and a pleasure!
I told you there would be more clips from this 1988 Friends & Lovers Concert! This video captures my performance of Don McLean's masterful "Vincent (Starry, Starry Night)." My friend John Lewis-McLaren accompanies me on guitar.
As promised, here is another clip from the 1988 Friends & Lovers Reunion Concert, held at First Unitarian Universalist Church of San Diego during Gay Pride Weekend. Opening the second half, my friend John Lewis-McLaren accompanied me on several songs. This begins with an a capella vesion of Paul Simon's "Song for the Asking" followed by my duet with John, "Sweet Baby James" by James Taylor. These songs were staples of my concerts in those years and reviewing them has inspired me to bring some of them back in the near future.
John — husband to Grace Lewis-McLaren (who accompanied me on piano in the first half) — died recently and even though he had moved away some years ago, we all miss him. He was loved by all. I will feature more of his guitar work in a future blog post, too.
This is likely to be the first of several performance videos from a successful series of benefit concerts in the 80s and 90s that raised money to assist people with AIDS. The first Friends & Lovers concert was during Gay Pride weekend 1987 and, in 1988, we staged Friends & Lovers: The Reunion Concert. This medley is from that 1988 concert -— actually performed on two nights during the long action-packed Gay Pride weekend.
This may have been the most ambitious concert we ever staged — there were no fewer than 20 other musicians and performers involved and we were fortunate to have the sponsorship and production assistance of the the Looking Glass Mobile Theater (based at First Unitarian Universalist Church of San Diego). As in 1987, the show's director was the irrepressible Kay Furrer.
With my good friend and talented songwriter Grace Lewis-McLaren on piano, I sang this medley of "Somewhere Out There" and Elton John's "I Need You to Turn to" during the first half of the concert. Thankfully, I changed shirts the second half. I now want to bring back costume changes for all future concerts.
Look for more videos from this concert in the days to come. There are many treasures in the recently converted DVD.
And let me hear from you, OK? I want to know if you like my curly brown hair? My big (OK, ridiculously big) glasses?
Singer-Songwriter Chris Hassett
My songs comes from my heart and from my life. I hope you take some time to listen.