Juanes rocks crowd at celebratory Clinton concert
“I used to walk through the streets and dream of someday being a musician,” Juanes told Saturday’s concert crowd of his days living in Los Angeles as an aspiring rock star. (Handout/Getty Images for Control Room)
By ANGIE ROMERO
Some of the world’s biggest, most socially responsible stars came together last night to celebrate Bill Clinton’s 65th birthday and ten years since the former president completed his second term at the White House and embarked on a path of philanthropy.
The star-studded concert, called “A Decade of Difference: Celebrating Ten Years of the William J. Clinton Foundation,” was held Saturday night at the iconic Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles. Broadcast live on Yahoo!, it sought to raise funds and awareness about the foundation’s global initiatives in health, underdeveloped economies, the environment, and children. All in all, Clinton’s work has reached some 300 million people in more than 180 countries, according to the foundation (nearly 4,000 people benefitting from HIV/AIDS treatments, more than 26,000 micro-entrepreneurs, farmers, and small business owners improving their livelihoods and communities, and over 2.2 million tons of greenhouse gases getting cut or abated in major cities around the world).
Among the artists who paid tribute to Clinton were Stevie Wonder, who opened the concert with “Sir Duke” and closed his set with “Superstition;” Bono and The Edge (in a set that included “Miss Sarajevo,” with Bono noting, “this president rode in during the siege of Sarajevo”); K’naan, who thanked Clinton for his peacekeeping efforts in his native Somalia; Kenny Chesney, Usher and Lady Gaga.
Juanes, the sole Latino performer of the night, played four songs: “Me Enamora,” “A Dios Le Pido,” “La Camisa Negra,” and “La Noche.” Actress Maria Bello introduced the Colombian star, who launched his own foundation, Mi Sangre, in 2006 to help the youth affected by Colombia’s long-standing armed conflict. Clinton, in the company of wife Hillary and daughter Chelsea, seemed to enjoy the high-energy set, while many in the mixed crowd got up and danced.
Lady Gaga channeled Marilyn Monroe with a nude-colored flowy dress and pant suit and big blonde wig. The eccentric pop star kicked off her set with a slow version of “Born This Way” played from a large, tree-shaped piano prop and later sang a version of “Bad Romance” where she switched the lyrics to “caught in a Bill romance.” Before the show, Clinton jokingly voiced his anxiety over the Mother Monster’s set, saying: “I got nervous when Gaga said she was planning to have a Marilyn moment…I thought, ‘my God’…I will have a heart attack celebrating my 65th birthday?” He later noted he is the “only person in history who got to be president and who had a post-presidential party attended both by Lady Gaga and the Secretary of State.”
Usher suffered a wardrobe malfunction with a large rip in his pants, but kept on dancing to familiar songs like “OMG” and “Yeah” without a hitch.
Watch Juanes’ set below: