Soul/R&B legends The “Mighty Mighty” O’Jays along with one of Motown’s most important groups, the Four Tops, and L.T.D.’s iconic lead vocalist Jeffrey Osborne put on an unforgettable night at the Microsoft Theater on Dec. 1.
The night began with the Four Tops and a show packed with hits followed. Of the original Four Tops, Abdul “Duke” Fakir is the only surviving member. It’s been nearly 55 years since their first number one hit, "I Can't Help Myself (Sugar Pie, Honey Bunch),” and their songs remain timeless. The Four Tops performed hit after hit with songs like “Baby I Need Your Loving,” “Bernadette,” “It’s The Same Old Song,” and “Standing in the Shadows of Love.” The Four Tops' outfits and choreography are better than ever.
Osborne hit the stage after the Four Tops with many notable songs but started the show off walking down the aisle until he made his way onstage. Last year marked L.T.D.’s 50th anniversary. Osborne, once the groups drummer, moved up front to lead vocalist in 1976 and in 1982 released his debut solo album after leaving the group two years earlier. Osborne had a very successful solo career in addition to all his hits with L.T.D. He had over 20 charting solo hits and 10 charting albums. Osborne discussed how you could name a song by a bass line and his band played Rick James' “Give It to Me Baby,” before going into L.T.D.’s “Love Ballad.” Osborne ended with another L.T.D hit “Every Time I Turn Around (Back in Love Again).”
The O’Jays celebrated their 60th-anniversary last year. The O’Jays, originally a five-member group, is now a trio with surviving members Eddie Levert, Walter Williams and Eric Nolan Grant, a member for over 20 years. Co-founder William Powell passed in 1977 and Bill Isles, another co-founder, passed March of 2019. The group was inducted into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 2004, the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2005 and in 2013, the National Rhythm and Blues Hall of Fame. The O’Jays had seven Top 20 singles and eight Top 20 albums
The O’Jays closed out the show with all their big hits including “Livin’ For the Weekend,” “I Love Music,” and for “Love Train,” footage of the group performing the song on Soul Train was on the screens. The closing song was “For the Love of Money.” Last year the group announced plans to retire in 2020, and Lavert commented during the show saying “Sh*t Ya.” After 60 years of performing, the group sounds great and gets the crowd on their feet.