Why does Toyota Summer Concert Series ignore ex-Motown artists?
The Today show just announced their upcoming Toyota Concert Series for the summer season which begins 5/18 and features a performance each Friday by various artists. The line up for this season includes Usher, Justin Beaver, Chris Brown, Pitbull, Band Perry, Kenny Chesney, Maroon 5, Zae Brown Band, Hot Chelle Rae, Train, and Jason Mraz.
Totally disregarded are living legendary Motown artists. Why can't the series include Diana Ross, Stevie Wonder, Gladys Knight, Martha Reeves, Mary Wilson, Velvelettes, Jimmy Ruffin, Lionel Richie, Four Tops, Smokey Robinson?
Maybe we should sent letters to Melissa Lonner, Sr. Producer, NBC who is responsible for the Toyota Concert Series on the Today show.
What do other forum members think about this suggestion?
Because they want to rake in large sums of cash not honor legends. Smokey Robinson played Atlantic City last week for
those who wanted to see him. Gladys still keeps active and we know Lionel is doing his country tribute thing which may show up in NY at some point though I won't be running out to catch it. Stevie plays when and where he wants to. Not
to sound mean but I doubt Martha, Mary Wilson or Jimmy Ruffin could fill a school lunchroom in New York. Don't waste your time...
I am an upbeat positive forward thinking kind of guy, but alas, I have to agree with Splanky. about not being able to fill a lunchroom in NYC with these music legends.
it reminds of being in Disney in Florida on a bus with 3 earnest 20-ish management/marketing types who posed the question to my family about what could be done to make the stay more enjoyable. We were staying at the Pop Century part of the property and in the three days had not heard one Motown song on the part of the property devoted to 60's pop culture. The 3 between them had no idea who we were talking about, until we mentioned Diana Ross, (Ross detractors out there, you have to give her her props), and then they acted as if they knew what we were talking about. I don't know if anything has changed since that time 5 years ago, but in the next 3 days nothing did.
I respectfully beg to differ splanky. Miss Martha Reeves sells out BB Kings every time she play New York and Miss Reeves is very popular, and with her new hit song with The Crystal Method, Martha reeves will remain popular.
Originally Posted by splanky
My best to you,
Originally Posted by splanky
Most of those artists have upcoming albums releasing this year, so it's just PR for them. It's like when Diana performed at Good Morning America winter concert series several yrs ago, she did so because she was promoting her project. I just think they reach out to artists who have new stuff to promote.
It sounds like the Toyota Series is all newer artists aimed at a younger demographic.............that spends money more easily than us. There were no heritage artists in there.
As for Splanky's comments, they are always resisted, always unwelcome, and we can always come up with some circumstances that appear to refute them ~ but I think we all also know that what he says is also true. This isn't 1965.
The purpose of this series is to promote major label acts who have new albums and/or big summer tours to promote.
My comments, which by the way I have a right to make anywhere on the forum as long as I'm a member not only do not
require solicitation but were not intended to badly portray the talents of any of the mentioned artists. I love Jimmy Ruffin and Martha Reeves both and have most of their material. I know Martha plays BB Kings but that a different thing.
BB's is actually a business that makes the bulk of it's money hosting both corporate and private events in addition to selling lots of food and alcohol. That's how it can afford to feature a number of specialty events like Martha's shows,
which reflect places in American musical history but wouldn't work as large concert draws. The current mass consumers
of music, much of which is itunes and other mp3g downloads is not gonna plunk down major change for a roster of acts
whose carreer peak was before they were born or whose claim to fame reads "Former Bassist for Bob Marley" "Original Rascal" "Tempts Opening Act". If it was profitable for such a roster to tour as listed above AND the parties were comitted
to it, it would have already happened. Peace....
Well if the Martha Reeves hit with The Crystal Method keeps climbing the charts, the Today Show will be very happy to have the First Lady of Motown-Miss Martha Reeves, grace their stage.
Originally Posted by splanky
Yours, with every good wish.
Many of the artists listed in the first post have appeared on the TODAY concert series.
Diana was on when RTL was about to launch. Gladys appeared when her AT LAST album was released, and Martha and the Vandellas appeared when she was about to do AIN'T MISBEHAVIN'. I believe Lionel has appeared as well. So its not as if these acts are totally ignored. But if they aren't currently hot, the slots are going to go those who are.
Last edited by reese; 04-28-2012 at 04:34 PM.
Mary Wilson did hers for GMA in Central Park. Maybe if the crowds were more mature, they'd book more mature or classic artists. Just as I have very little to no interest or knowledge
Originally Posted by reese
in any of the artists booked for this season. I would not expect a kid in his teens or twenties to get excited enough to get up at 5:30 am to go and see artists from his parents and grandparents generation. Anyone that does not understand that the classic Motown artists were at their popularity peak closer to 40 years ago and expects them to draw the size crowds current artist do, is just plain dumb as jello with fruit cocktail mixed in.
That fact that Mary, Martha, Smokey, Gladys, Diane, Lionel , Tempts, Tops, the Jacksons, Stevie etc, etc can still get concert bookings and a paying audience after 45-50 years is astounding in my opinion. (lunchrooms notwithstanding........).
Last edited by marv2; 04-28-2012 at 04:50 PM.
If Dick Clarks' Caravan of Stars consisted of folks like the Benny Goodman Orch., Patty Page, Rudy Valee, Ella Fitzgerald and Perry Como, etc, etc and presented to teenagers in the 1960's, it would have failed. Why package old Motown acts to teenagers in the 2010's?
Last edited by marv2; 04-28-2012 at 04:46 PM.