“FREE FALLING (HD)” TOM PETTY with AXL ROSE
Tom Petty’s soaring California anthem penned with E.L.O.’s Jeff Lynne has become one of Petty’s signature tunes. As “Free Falling” soared to #1, the 1989 MTV Awards closed the show with the hottest song in the country. Tom had a little trick up his sleeve to pump up even more excitement into the performance. Unknown to the audience, a familiar face in a backwards cap with long red hair comes out during the second stanza. OMG! It’s Axl Frickin’ Rose! Lyrics like “I’m a bad boy for breaking her heart” and “all the vampires living down the valley” never sounded more natural and dangerous!
“OVER YOU” RAY PARKER JR with NATALIE COLE
Natalie Cole never truly got the credit she deserved. Her father, Nat King Cole, literally dominated his era and genre. Natalie was pigeonholed as “Nat’s daughter” and despite numerous R&B and adult contemporary hits, she is rarely listed as one of the major R&B artists of her time. Of course, Natalie brought some of this on herself. A promising 70’s career derailed by her drug issues then her 80’s comeback, culminated with a Grammy Award winning song meshing her vocals to her father’s. During her 80’s comeback, Natalie teamed up with Ray Parker Jr on a “lost hidden treasure”.
“HELLO” LIONEL RICHIE with JENNIFER NETTLES of SUGARLAND
Who can forget Lionel Richie lamenting at the piano, wondering if the one he loves is equally searching for him? Fast forward 30 years (yes, it’s been that long!) and Lionel’s solitary piano ballad becomes a powerhouse duet with one of the most soulful female singers of our time. Jennifer Nettles not only adds a new dimension to the song, she attacks the self-pity attitude and demands your full attention. I’m not crazy about the duo’s stage presence interaction but their vocal chemistry here works so well.