After setting the table for Sheryl Crow in 2009 and having to endure the ignominy of opening for the Goo Goo Dolls last year, Philadelphia and Late Night with Jimmy Fallon band The Roots will finally get to headline their hometown July 4 celebration this summer.
Mayor Nutter announced the free concert on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway this morning. Along with the Roots, the lineup includes classic R & B band Earth Wind & Fire, singer-songwriter Sara Barielles, blue eyed Doobie Brother Michael McDonald, British hip-hop soul singer Estelle and, on the wheels of steel, Philadelphia's DJ Jazzy Jeff.
Some other Welcome America! musical doings were also announced. Aaron Neville. whose Joe Henry-produced 2010 gospel album I Know I've Been Changed was one of the overlooked treasures of last year, and Philadelphia jazz bass man Gerald Veasley will play Penn's Landing during the Taste Of Philadelphia festival, which runs June 24-26. And veteran jazz singer Nancy Wilson kicks off Welcome America! at the Dell Music Center in Fairmount Park on June 23.