The only thing better than seeing Earth, Win & Fire perform live, is seeing their concert with DeeJay Tra.
My nephew Traveain, a DeeJay by trade, has been an EWF fan his entire life. His playlist currently contains 49 Earth Wind & Fire songs.
“My mother would say I started listening when I was inside the womb,” he said. “She had a record player in the basement. She used to play all this old school music so I grew up hearing their songs. When I was older, I would hold the covers and read the song titles as they played. That’s how I memorized all the album titles and years. I remember how all the covers look too. My dad and I always listened to them on our road trips too.”
Last Sunday Traveain and I, along with other members of our family, got to see Earth, Wind & Fire perform at the Appleton PAC. The show was a magical ride, the living embodiment of the group’s hit single, Fantasy.
And we will live together, until the twelfth of never
Our voices will ring forever, as one
It was my first time seeing them live, Traveain’s third, and both of us left in awe of Earth Wind & Fire’s timeless groove and, in particular, original member Philip Bailey’s four-octave vocal range.
We all sang Happy Birthday to Philip Sunday night and then hit Google to confirm that the youthful soulster really did turn 71-years old that night.
“I have no idea how he can sing that high!” Traveain said.
In addition to lead singer Bailey, the 50-year old group still includes original members bassist Verdine White and drummer Ralph Johnson. Nine other musicians perform with the band, including Bailey’s son, Philip Doron Bailey, who has been touring with them since 2009.
I wondered if they would take an intermission, or have an opening act, but they played straight through, rarely even pausing between songs. Most of the audience, like me, spent the whole night on our feet. My dancing toes are still sore.
I asked Traveain if he had a favorite song.
“I have a lot of favorites but Can’t Hide Love is at the top of the list,” he said. “I also love September because they sing about the 21st night and my birthday is the 23rd. Besides those, the songs I play the most are Reasons, After the Love is Gone, Love’s Holiday and Sun Goddess.”
Thanks to EWF and DeeJayTra for a fantastic night in a land called, “Fantasy”
Loving life for you and me.