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CNN Live Event/Special
"We Love New York City: The Homecoming Concert"; Hurricane Henri Takes Aim At Northeast. Aired 5-6p ET
Aired August 21, 2021 - 17:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: It's great to be covering this with you. The concert is going to be starting in about 10 seconds. It's an incredibly exciting day for New York City, with so many people from all walks of life in Central Park trying to safely get together.
WE LOVE NEW YORK CITY: THE HOMECOMING CONCERT starts right now.
GAYLE KING, CO-HOST, CBS THIS MORNING: The country and most of the world watched when the city was hit by COVID. Overnight it seemed our hospitals filled, our streets empty. The sounds of a city that have always crackled with life were replaced by wailing sirens as our sick were carried to overcrowded hospitals where beds were scarce.
But thankfully, thankfully -- courage and professionalism were not. It is not marked down anywhere officially but the fight back against this virus began the first time a nurse turned her mask inside out.
We remember that for protection, she wore a garbage bag over her scrubs because at the time, guys, they didn't have PPE because if you didn't know, nothing -- and I do mean nothing -- comes between a nurse and their duties.
The grocery store employees, thank you. Health care professionals, thank you. The police, NYPD here in full force, I was so glad to see them tonight. Thank you, thank you, thank you, NYPD. And other essential workers took their stations on the front lines.
Next and slowly, New Yorkers began to do what we do. We find a way. You know we were once the epicenter of the virus. Now we moved to being the epicenter of the recovery.
So it brings us to this humid, this sticky, this August night. A storm is on the way, but we're good where we gather for a common purpose to say "Welcome back, New York City". Give yourselves a round of applause.
Now, let's figure out who is in the house.
Manhattan, where are you?
Queens, where are you please?
Brooklyn, where you at? Bronx.
And let's not forget Staten Island. Let's not forget it.
So let's give it up. No, no, no, Staten Island. We love you, Staten Island. No, no, no. Give it up for the rest of the country and the world.
We are here tonight to say this is a way out, even if it takes a little time to get there. You know it has taken a minute. You know. I know that we are done with COVID, but COVID isn't done with us and we have to remember that.
So wherever you are watching from, please, stay strong. You will get through this. You will get through this. But for the next five hours, we're going to party New York style. And you are all invited.
You can wear whatever you like. You can bring whatever you like. I asked them when they asked me to do this, what's the attire. They said Gayle, we have no attire. Just wear a bright color. Bright color. Bright color.
And let's not miss this. At 4:59, the sun came out. The sun came out. Let's kick this off.
Welcome to WE LOVE NEW YORK CITY: THE HOMECOMING CONCERT brought to you by Clive Davis. Thank you, Clive. And Live Nation.
Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, cool cats and kittens and puppies that you love please welcome one of the greatest -- the greatest symphony orchestras in the world. And they belong here in New York, conducted by Marin Alsop. This is the incredible -- and incredible is the word -- New York Philharmonic.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It is the "WE LOVE NEW YORK CITY: THE HOMECOMING CONCERT" featuring Jon Batiste, Andrea Bocelli, Kane Brown, D.J. Cassidy, Stephen Colbert, LL Cool J and friends, Elvis Costello, Clive Davis, Lucky Daye, Mayor Bill De Blasio, Earth, Wind & Fire, Kenny "Baby Face" Edmonds, Cynthia Erivo, Jimmy Fallon, Jennifer Hudson, Wyclef Jean, Journey, The Killers, Gayle King, Don Lemon, Maluma, Barry Manilow, Julia Michaels, New York Philharmonic, Polo G, Carlos Santana, JP Saxe, Senator Chuck Schumer, Paul Simon, Patty Smith, Bruce Springsteen, Rob Thomas and more.
BLACK RABBIT, STREET PERFORMER: One of my favorite childhood memories is when my brother and I decided to raise money to go to Puerto Rico and see our mom. So we just looked at each other one day and we are like, we can just perform on the subway and do this.
And we made the money to get there and back in about two or three days or something like that.
Ever since the pandemic, it's gotten more complicated. But New York feels like it's returning with a vengeance.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is our first time in New York.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're visiting and there's a lot to see. So it's been fun.
RABBIT: Tourists are important for street performers because they're a really part of it. It is really satisfying for the soul.
New York is back. And music is back. Travel is certainly back.
D.J. CASSIDY, HOST: We have the best loved tenor in the world. His mellow yet powerful timbre has resonated to the tune of 80 million records sold worldwide. A pop star but also a refined opera singer, he's living testimony of the Italian vocal tradition.
Ladies and gentlemen, Andrea Bocelli.
ANDREA BOCELLI, TENOR: Thank you very much. Thank you for this incredible invitation in this city where I lived the most beautiful memories of my career. And especially here in Central Park ten years ago, unforgettable for me.
So I decided to sing this song because this song speaks about a storm and the song says that after the storm is a golden sky. And all together, we crossed a terrible storm. And we are here to say to this storm "stop, it is over".
And as you know, after the storm comes always back the sun, and I want to bring the beautiful sun of my country with a song that sings just the song -- the Italian song. It is the most famous Italian song, "O Sole Mio". Thank you very much.
D.J. CASSIDY: Grammy winner, academy award winner, critically acclaimed star of the Aretha Franklin bio pic, "Respect", please welcome the incomparable Jennifer Hudson.
(APPLAUSE) ANNOUNCER: Coming up, Carlos Santana and Rob Thomas. And later, LL
Cool J and friends, Elvis Costello and Bruce Springsteen.
"We Love New York City, The Homecoming Concert," is presented by the new Citi custom cash card. Earn cash back that automatically adjusts to where you're spending is trending.
CHAD MYERS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: I'm CNN meteorologist, Chad Myers. Back to the concert in a bit.
Let's get you up to date on the 5:00 advisory from the National Hurricane Center.
It is still a hurricane, 75 miles per hour Hurricane Henri, moving north, 300 miles south of Long Island now.
Hurricane warnings are in effect all the way from Rhode Island, through Connecticut and Long Island obviously itself.
The storm will get a bit stronger overnight, but then lose a little power in a slightly cooler air south of Long Island, cooler water as well.
It will turn to the right and move away, that's still 24 hours of rainfall in some spots over New England.
What are the real threats? Three to five foot of storm surge. The threat is also a full moon. High tides are higher during full moon.
You have three to five, plus the full-moon tide, that could be more than you would see without a full moon.
You also have some south shore likely erosion. Rainfall coming down.
Obviously, this place -- I don't know if you paid attention to this. There have been 10 to 15 inches of rain across New York and New England in the past two months.
The ground is saturated and the trees have leaves on them. So when the wind starts to blow and we start to get that water running off, these trees, roots are in mud, and this wind will bring trees down.
We will certainly see hundreds of thousands of power outages up here, even with a storm that's only 70 miles per hour.
Now back to the concert.
ANNOUNCER: Emmy Award winning journalist, co-host of "CBS This Morning," and fellow New Yorker, ladies and gentlemen, please welcome Gayle King. (CHEERING)
GAYLE KING, CO-HOST, "CBS THIS MORNING": It just happened to me during the commercial break, somebody went, hey, Gayle, I looked up, it was Stephen Colbert, who will be on the stage a little later tonight.
Before we go to prompter, guys, can we acknowledge what just happened here. that New York philharmonic made me so proud we live in this city.
KING: Jennifer Hudson, I just said to her, Jennifer, what was that? She goes, it was an out-of-body experience. But she certainly fed off the crowd. So thank you. Thank you, guys.
KING: It is so great. I am so thrilled and proud to be here in Central Park with friends. We are friends. We are friends. We are vaccinated. We are tested.
KING: I'm going to say that again. We are vaccinated. We are tested.
KING: People have been texting me, saying, Gayle, the crowd is awfully close. But let me tell you something, Clive Davis runs a tight ship.
When I came in yesterday, I checked in, they said we know who you are, we need to see your I.D. Now we need to see your COVID test. Now we need to see your vaccination. They ain't playing.
So I have so missed this. I have so missed this.
And I find -- don't you find it is simple things you miss. I am finding, I say this all the time, I am even missing people I don't like.
KING: Was I really mad at that guy? Stuff like your favorite diner, your favorite movie theater, your favorite club.
Soon we'll be able to go to Arthur Ashe Stadium. The U.S. Open is coming up in a couple weeks.
KING: And of course, Broadway. I saw Lion King. Broadway.
KING: So hello, audience. Think about some of your favorite places, give me ideas. Somebody. Anybody.
KING: Yes. Red Rooster. I love Red Rooster, too.
Before we all head back to whatever your favorite place is, please know that we have one hell of a show for you. And make no mistake, it is for you, it's about you. It's about you.
We thank you, New York, for watching out for each other. We thank you for cheering for the essentials. Please, for the essentials.
KING: The world is watching us tonight.
We want to thank you for getting vaccinated at an outstanding rate.
KING: Please encourage others who are not vaccinated to do the same. I have some of them in my own family. It is very frustrating.
What do you say we keep this concert going?
KING: I think so, too, because we are just getting started.
It is impossible, and the word is impossible, to tell the story of American music without the man who is about to take the stage right now.
He is -- listen to the credentials -- five-time Grammy Award winning producer and executive. His work spans six decades over which he has been involved with just about every influential artist who has ever recorded. Anybody you like, he knows.
His tireless effort to bring this concert to life tonight -- he did this tonight for us -- is only one of his amazing achievements in a career marked by, oh, so many.
Ladies and gentlemen, the legendary, I'm going to say that again, legendary, Clive Davis.
CLIVE DAVIS, MUSIC PRODUCER: So New York City is and will forever be my hometown.
DAVIS: It doesn't just have a place in my heart, it is my heart.
DAVIS: I was deeply honored when the mayor personally asked me to present his concert on the great lawn of Central Park to officially reopen New York City.
Of course, I immediately said yes. I was born and bred in New York.
DAVIS: My education at P.S. 161 in Brooklyn --
DAVIS: -- out of Rasmus Hall High School in Brooklyn --
DAVIS: -- has been absolutely invaluable all my life.
Now, once again, it is music that will be the messenger. Music that became my passion, it changed my life forever.
And so of course I got to work and first called many of the iconic performers who I am so proud to have worked with and bonded with becoming lifelong friends.
I wanted every genre of music represented tonight.
And my team of my son, Doug Davis and Mark Johnson and Patrick Mentin, joined me in securing the other brilliant artists you'll unforgettably see this evening.
I want to say thank you to Jeff Gordon and Jason Miller, and everyone at Live Nation.
DAVIS: And to all of the wonderful players and to all of you music fans throughout the world who continue to support music in ever increasing numbers.
DAVIS: So tonight, tonight, I only ask one thing. When you're having a great time, go on and cheer loud, loud enough so they hear you all the way to Brooklyn's Crown Heights.
DAVIS: After all, that's where I grew up.
As a quintessential forever loyal Brooklyn Dodger fan --
(CHEERING) DAVIS: and today an ardent totally loyal New York Yankees fan --
DAVIS: -- that's what I always like to hear in every field and today in Yankee Stadium.
So all of you out there, I hope this evening you have a stern and really memorable night celebrating music and celebrating the reopening of our great New York City.
DAVIS: So now it is my great pleasure, my great pleasure to bring to the stage to perform, an artist who is so very special to me. I signed him twice. And each time he's made music history.
He will be joined by the historic music man, Wyclef Jean, and Product G & B.
DAVIS: And following that, he will be joined by that great artist with the truly spectacular voice, Rob Thomas.
DAVIS: So, ladies and gentlemen, please welcome the one and only, Carlos Santana.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ladies and gentlemen, hey! This is the sound of Wyclef Jean with Carlos Santana.
New York City, wave your hands side to side. Rock with me now.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You're about to get down to the sounds of Carlos Santana, the sounds of Carlos Santana!
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let's go, let's go, let's go. Let's go, let's go! In the place, Wyclef, we got no time to waste.
New York City, put your hands up. Carlos Santana is in the place. One time for Haiti. One time for Afghanistan. One time for New York City.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Put your hands in the air. Let the people of Africa see you. Let the people of Haiti see you, Brooklyn, New York City!
ANNOUNCER: Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome Rob Thomas.
ROB THOMAS, SINGER: New York City, when I say move, you say move. When I point to you, you say move. Are you with me?
THOMAS: This is my home. This is our time. Are you with me?
THOMAS: Are you with us?
THOMAS: Carlos Santana!
Love you guys so much.
Be good to each other.
ANNOUNCER: Still ahead, JP Saxe and Julia Michaels. And later, Kane Brown, Barry Manilow and The Killers.
"We Love New York City, The Homecoming Concert" is presented by Expedia. Official travel companion of the homecoming concert. It matters who you travel with.