The Kennedy Center Honors aired Sunday night, and while we’re still waiting for someone to put Snoop Dogg’s portion of the tribute to honoree Herbie Hancock on YouTube – he had the black-tie crowd standing and chanting! – some highlights have surfaced. Watch a few below from the tributes to Shirley MacLaine, Billy Joel, and Carlos Santana.
Anna Kendrick belted for honoree Shirley MacLaine, and now we want to see the 1998 Tony nominee come back to Broadway:
Rufus Wainwright was the perfect choice for “New York State of Mind” and “Piano Man” during the Billy Joel tribute. The “Piano Man” singalong at the end got me misty. (You can see Snoop diggin’ it at 3:08.) Also, I love that fellow honoree Martina Arroyo, an opera diva, was mouthing the words.
Garth Brooks also honored Joel, and while his rendition of “Allentown” wasn’t my favorite, his “Goodnight Saigon” (which starts at 1:40 and ends with vets joining him onstage for another singalong) was truly stellar. Not a dry eye in the house (at least not in mine).
The Carlos Santana tribute was a great way to start the show – you were at home grooving just like the Obamas. Here’s the most badass moment of the telecast: When Sheila E. knocked over her cymbal stand at the end of her performance with Steve Winwood.
Santana’s reaction at 1:45 to Buddy Guy slaying a guitar solo in “Hoochie Coochie Man” in his honor – an example of why this awards show is the best.
Ah, here’s a snippet of Snoop in a Kennedy Center highlight video. Start at 1:37 to see Bill O’Reilly begin the Herbie Hancock tribute (“I know, I’m surprised, too”) and then see Snoop working the room (the Obamas and Santana are particularly into it at 1:52).