A solid half-century of pop and rock music converged onstage for the 31st annual Tibet House benefit concert at Carnegie Hall this past Saturday.
Hosted and curated as always by the maestro Philip Glass, who sat in on piano with several of the acts who performed over the course of the two-and-a-half-hour event, it was that intertwining of the generations that truly made this year’s show one to remember. Dev Hynes eschewed his Blood Orange persona to sit at the Steinway to deliver a stirring rendition of Nina Simone’s “Nobody’s Fault But Mine,” before taking a noble stab at Glass’s “Etude #6”. Angel Olsen was a master at controlling that enormous atmosphere in the great hall, as nothing but the hiss off her amplifier accompanied the stark morphine blues of “White Fire” off her magnificent 2014 LP Burn Your Fire For No Witness.
Returning Tibet House concert champion Patti Smith took the stage shortly thereafter, praising the Parkland students for forcing the hand of their elders, while condemning the United States for trying to put the American embassy in Jerusalem, and leading her longtime group through a defiant rendition of Buffalo Springfield’s “For What It’s Worth,” and “Peaceable Kingdom” off her excellent, underrated 2004 LP Trampin’ with a little bit of “People Have The Power” thrown in at the end. Alabama’s St. Paul and the Broken Bones followed in Iggy Pop’s footsteps by shaking up the Carnegie Hall stage with an energetic, soulful set, along with likely the first time a shoe has ever been thrown across the Carnegie Hall stage -- as singer Paul Janeway did during an impassioned rendition of the band’s own “Broken Bones & Pocket Change,” with Mr. Glass himself sitting in on piano.