Filmed at The Workplay Theater in Birmingham, AL 9-26-09 with Ona Watson.
Song available on Taylor's new album, The Distance.
On sale now! Pick your copy today!
Saturday, June 28, 2008
Taylor Hicks, Huey Lewis & Jerry Lee Lewis Headline "A Capitol Fourth"
Jimmy Smits has participated in PBS's Fourth of July concert before, but he will host for the first time on Friday.
Smits, whose work includes roles on "The West Wing" and "NYPD Blue," said being present on the Mall for the annual event "takes your breath away."
"You have all the monuments, and the orchestra, you've got cannon batteries and fireworks, and it gives you goose bumps," he said.
This year's concert includes appearances by iconic rocker Jerry Lee Lewis, 2006 "American Idol" winner Taylor Hicks, pop band Huey Lewis and the News, Broadway performer Brian Stokes Mitchell and classical singers Hayley Westenra, Harolyn Blackwell and Vittorio Grigolo, as well as the National Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Erich Kunzel.
The show will include a tribute to the Olympics, taking place Aug. 8-24. Kunzel is scheduled to conduct the music at the opening ceremonies in Beijing, "so this was his idea," said executive producer Jerry Colbert. "We're hoping to have some of the Olympians (onstage) as we salute Team USA and play the John Williams Olympic theme."
Colbert said the concert, in contrast to the more somber National Memorial Day Concert on the Mall, will feature more energy and celebration.
"Between the Lewis boys and Taylor Hicks, they'll get everybody going," he said. "Huey will do 'Dancing in the Dark,' the old Springsteen song. And Jerry Lee Lewis "Great Balls of Fire' will almost lead right into the fireworks."
The broadcast's signature fireworks finale is slated to run an extra two minutes this year. And viewers may notice a different look, with a new stage at the Capitol's reflecting pool and several new camera angles, including one from inside the Capitol dome.
"We're trying to create an Olympic feeling, so the entire city can see the fireworks and the crowd. We'll do guns and bells and bonfires," Colbert said. "All this time later, 232 years after (the nation's founders) were at Independence Hall, we're still having a birthday party for this country."