It was parents’ night out at the Universal Amphitheater on Monday as the baby-boomer set and many industry celebs and execs turned out in droves to Tiger Jam II, the second annual fundraiser benefiting the Tiger Woods Foundation, and heard perfs from the Eagles, Babyface and Hootie & the Blowfish during the fast-paced evening.
More than $500,000 was raised to advance the foundation’s mandate to assist at-risk youth through study and golf programs.
The Eagles, who haven’t performed for the general public since their reunion roadshow ended in August 1996, blew the roof off the hilltop venue with a blistering perf of the supergroup’s top repertoire, ranging from the driving “Life in the Fast Lane” to “Take It Easy,” the band’s very first hit in 1972 which was a fitting closer to the hour-plus set.
But before the full Eagles contingent graced the stage, Glenn Frey and Joe Walsh regaled the packed house with rollicking forays into their respective solo careers: Frey offering such tunes as “Smuggler’s Blues” and “The Heat Is On” — songs from his “Miami Vice” period and final solo MCA Records disc — while Walsh hit bull’s-eyes with the likes of “Walk Away” and “Ordinary, Average Guy,” his playful paean to life in suburbia.
The duo appeared surprisingly at ease and in sync with one another, perhaps because, while Walsh has been doing some solo gigs, he and Frey have also been working the corporate convention circuit.
Frey and Walsh were initially backed by a huge contingent of musicians, including a four-man horn section and two backup singers, then were joined by Eagles guitarist Don Felder and bassist Timothy B. Schmit.
Schmit’s pristine vocal work on the 1979 hit “I Can’t Tell You Why” was a show highlight and reminded the gold-card set he is more than a second-banana bassist. His perf nabbed one of the evening’s largest rounds of applause.
But it wasn’t until a smiling Don Henley assumed the position behind the drum kit that the crowd got fired-up. Henley’s entrance was met with a standing ovation as the opening bars of “Hotel California,” the Eagles 1977 hit, rang throughout the venue.
Kenneth (Babyface) Edmonds unequivocally demonstrated why he is the music industry’s preeminent triple-threat (producer-artist-writer) by delivering several flawless readings — such as “Change the World” — while backed by a who’s who of sidemen, including bassist Nathan East and percussionist Sheila E.
Hootie & the Blowfish kicked off the well-planned evening by visiting tunes from its “Cracked Rear View” debut such as “I Only Want To Be With You” and a well-executed version of the Crosby, Stills & Nash winner “Love the One You’re With.”
Woods gave a brief speech espousing his foundation’s goals before the Eagles set, while Frey thanked the audience during an earlier set change break for “being here for the kids.”