By José Oliveira, Columnist–Colmar, France
Venue: LIONEL RICHIE – LORRACH (Germany) – Date – 15th July – ALL THE HITS ALL NIGHT LONG TOUR
Summer Festivals must have a big particularity–just be as much eclectic as possible, for touching all kinds of people. And the STIMMEN FESTIVAL did just that! Presenting this year were Patti Smith, Bob Dylan, Melissa Etheridge, Status Quo, Sinead O’Connor, and Lionel Richie (among others). It was a big success and to make both ends meet, they put out $1,500 000!!!!
The Festival went from July 2nd to 26th July in a beautiful little town called Lorrach, Germany. It is located near the border of Switzerland and France. Often concerts take place in each of these three countries, which is so fantastic.
It was a hot summer night. Jesus! It was 28°C at 8pm! Five thousand people were suffering at the Markplatz but they came to dance “all night long.”
The support act was given to the beautiful young South-African lady, NOMFUSI. With two albums out, she has shown spectacular music success. Her moving about the stage reminded me immediately of Tina Turner or even Miriam Makeba. She is a young musician putting the groove to the Motown Sound that she grew up with. No doubt, remember this name. NOMFUSI will be a great star.
Lionel Richie is at the top of his game. With three years on the road with the All Night Long Tour, our man still felt fresh at age 66. And with more of 100 millions albums sold, he couldn’t be happier!
Richie exclaimed to the crowd, “Unbelievable! In my long career, I never, never sang to people sitting and eating at restaurants near the stage! What the hell happened here?” He was very surprised to see the stage was placed in a middle of the Market Place with all restaurants and bars open around.
Many songs on the set list belonged to the Commodores period. But people didn’t care and were so happy and dancing all night long. And then, the hits came. “Endless Love,” “Say You, Say Me,” “Dancing on the Ceiling,” and “Hello”…The crowd was on fire!
Signing off until next time!
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I was born in Portugal and lived the Sixties exploring the great UK Rock magazines: "The New Musical Express" and "Melody Maker". Ray Charles and Pat Boone were my father’s fav. I became “The Great Pretender”. Cliff Richard was our Elvis Presley. As a beach boy, with my first guitar, I met a beautiful French girl on the beach! It was the Summer of 69!! We got married and rock music was our dowry. In France, I became a Wine Genetic Research Scientist. One of my works contributed to the decoding of the genome of the vine! As a rock journalist, I’ve worked twenty years for the Portuguese and Brazilian Rock Press. I ‘ve interviewed so many great artists. Then, one day I met FRANK ZAPPA! I got into trouble for introducing my wife to "Uncle Meat"!