The Philly 4th Of July Jam is one of America’s largest outdoor concerts, but until now, you had to be in Philadelphia to catch it. That’s changing this year, however, because producer/performers The Roots have partnered with VH1, VH1.com, and Palladia to broadcast the concert this upcoming Independence Day on the networks and in an online livestream. The 2013 concert lineup will be released later this year, but past performers include Elton John, Jonas Brothers, John Legend, Queen Latifah, Common, and Lauryn Hill, so we’re certain this is not a show to be missed. For more information about the broadcast, read on.
AMERICA’S LARGEST FREE CONCERT WILL BE SIMULCAST LIVE ON VH1 And PALLADIA AND STREAMED ON VH1.COM
PHILADELPHIA, PA– America’s largest free concert, the annual Philly Fourth of July Jam, has partnered with VH1 for exclusive broadcast, digital and live streaming rights. This year, the concert whose live show routinely draws over 500,000 people in the audience, will now be available to viewers nationwide through live broadcast on VH1 and high-definition music channel Palladia and live streaming on VH1.com.
The culminating event of the weeklong WAWA Welcome America Festival, the Philly Fourth of July Jam has taken place on the famed Ben Franklin Parkway for the past 20 years with crowds upwards of 500-600,000 revelers, blistering live musical performances from A-List artists and a full scale fireworks display at the end of the final performance. The Philly Fourth of July Jam has featured a wide range of music icons and Grammy Award winners over the years including Elton John, Garth Brooks, Sheryl Crow, Jonas Brothers, Lionel Richie, John Legend, Sara Bareilles, Queen Latifah, Common, Lauryn Hill and many others.
The deal was negotiated by Shawn Gee, longtime manager of The Roots and Jill Scott, as well as head of touring for Blueprint Group, (Lil Wayne, Nicki Minaj, TI and Hit-Boy amongst others), and Scott Mirkin, the festival and concert’s longtime executive producer. Shawn Gee, alongside The Roots members Ahmir “?uestlove” Thompson and Tarik “Black Thought” Trotter, became executive producers of the concert in 2010, joining Scott Mirkin and Geoff Gordon,President, Mid-Atlantic of Live Nation. Under the leadership of the executive team, many changes to the show were implanted, such as changing the concert format from a traditional opening, support and headline act format to that of a two hour long, multi-artist, multi-genre jam session featuring Grammy Award winners The Roots as house band.
“We are excited to partner with VH1 for this extraordinary concert. I’ve worked in the past with Rick Krim, Lee Rolontz, Ben Zurier and the VH1 team as a producer on VH1’s DIVAS and Hip Hop Honors shows, and I couldn’t think of better partners to present the Fourth of July Jam to the world. As a native Philadelphian, I may be a bit biased, but it’s only natural, given the historical significance, and the musical relevance, that Philly own the Fourth of July holiday,” says Shawn Gee. “While we are proud of our 500,000 person strong audience, it’s only right that the world gets to see the Largest Free Concert in America, even if from the comfort of home. Mayor Michael Nutter and his team have given Scott, Ahmir,Tarik, Geoff and I the creative freedom to leverage our collective resources to build out the show, however in our first meeting with the Mayor and his team, he made it clear that his goal was to get a national broadcast partner for the event, and I’m glad we were able to deliver that to Mayor Nutter and to the city of Philadelphia,” he adds.
“We are plussing the 4th of July holiday for our VH1 viewers with simply one of the best and biggest concerts of the summer,” said Tom Calderone, President, VH1 and Palladia. “We are proud to partner once again with Shawn and The Roots, an amazing team of creative visionaries and consummate professionals who create this amazing free show each summer for hundreds of thousands of Philadelphians. We are so looking forward to sharing the city’s musical and historic heritage for all the music lovers around the entire country to enjoy.”
Alongside The Roots Picnic music festival and Jay-Z’s Made in America Festival, the Philly Fourth of July concert has helped to brand Philadelphia as one of the top musical destinations in the nation with an unprecedented number of major musical events within city limits.
The Philly Fourth of July Jam executive team will work alongside VH1/Palladia organization for talent booking. A formal line-up announcement with additional details will be made this spring.
[Photo: Getty Images]