Four Tops concert an Omni 1st

Franklin, Wilson, New Edition among skedded performers

Omni Broadcasting Network will air its first original production, “From the Heart: The Four Tops 50th Anniversary Concert Special,” this fall in the top 25 markets.

Concert spec, to be taped July 28 at the Detroit Opera House, is scheduled to include Aretha Franklin, Mary Wilson, New Edition, Sam Moore, James Carter and the Temptations Review featuring Dennis Edwards in addition to the Four Tops.

Formed in 1954 in Detroit when they were in high school, the original Four Tops — Levi Stubbs, Obie Benson, Lawrence Payton and Duke Fakir — performed together for more than four decades. After Payton’s death in 1997, Theo Peoples joined the lineup. The legendary Motown quartet charted more than 30 singles, sold 50 million records and had two No. 1 pop hits, “Reach Out (I’ll Be There)” and “Sugar Pie Honey Bunch.”

Omni president Dennis Johnson said the airdate for the special has not been finalized but would likely be in late September or October.

Omni is a wholly owned subsid of OBN Holdings, an entertainment company engaged in TV broadcasting, feature film and TV production, music production and distribution and merchandising.

Omni launched in September. It owns one TV station in San Luis Obispo and negotiates carriage in other cities, giving it access to 50 million households, Johnson said.

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