Blondie, Kelly Clarkson, En Vogue, Angie Stone and Garbage’s Shirley Manson came together in Los Angeles Tuesday night for the fifth-annual WomenRock concert. The show, a benefit to raise awareness in the fight against breast cancer, will be aired on the Lifetime network on October 28th.
Like past WomenRock shows, this year’s event was imbued with the spirit of collaboration, beginning with Manson joining Blondie for a cover of dancehall artist Wayne Wonder’s “Bounce Along.” (In her trailer following the performance, Blondie singer Deborah Harry expressed hope that the two longtime friends might re-team to record the song.) Blondie went on to dominate the early portion of the night, opening with strong versions of “Rapture,” “End to End” — from the new album The Curse of Blondie — and “Heart of Glass.”
After Harry and mates got the crowd revved up, R&B took center stage, with En Vogue performing “Hold On” and Stone belting out “Wish I Didn’t Miss You.”
Up next, Clarkson proved more than capable of holding her own with her more experienced counterparts, ripping out crowd-pleasing versions of her hit “Miss Independent” and a cover of Aerosmith’s “Cryin’,” a song that she joked beforehand, “I’ve sung into my hairbrush many times.”
Clarkson also got into the collaborative festivities, becoming what she called, “An honorary member of En Vogue,” when she joined the trio for the rousing “Free Your Mind.”
One of the night’s most emotional moments cam when Stone performed a cover of Bette Midler’s “Wind Beneath My Wings,” accompanied onstage by several breast cancer survivors. Stone then teamed with fellow R&B crooner Anthony Hamilton for “Stay for a While,” a song they recorded together for her Stone Love album.
The two-hour performance ended, as it began, collaboratively, as all the rock & roll women gathered to belt out Blondie’s Eighties smash “Call Me.”