Sixteen thousand people, a sellout crowd, were filing to their seats as Blue Magie took the stage with their supporting band, The Magie of the Blue. Despite the obvious distraction of thousands of people making their way into the building, the Magie managed to mount a stunning show, highlighted by the group's intricate, some.times breath-taking dance routines and the shimmerine falset to of lead singer Ted ("The Wizard") Mills.
Opening witli several tunes from their current lantic release, Thirteen Blue Magie Lane, the group did "We 're on the Riglit Track," the eerie "Haunted By Your Love," and Mills' "I'm Just Chasing Rainbows," which had the assembled multitude cheering the Wizard's high notes, as did "Stop - So We Can Start All Over Again." After k a rousing version of the Blue Notes' "Bad Luck," with Richard Pratt to the fore. Blue Magie unleashed their show-stopper, "Let the Sideshow Begin," which displayed the best of their unique discoballet.
Up next were the Commodores, currently riding high on the charts with their Motown single, "Sweet Love." Tlie veteran six-piege west-coast unit combines several different elements, primarily a kind of "heavy metal" sound that can get a little repetitious at times. They know how to work a good groove wlien they catch one, however, and that happened here more of ten than not. After several numbers trom their latest album, Movin' On, the Commodores closed with a stomping version of their R&B hit of last summer, "(Love Can Be) Slippery When Wet."
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The O'Jays ten-piece back-up unit assembled on-stage next; an all-white band, it . proved to be flawless and instrumentalis poweriul throughout the O'Jays' magnificent manee. After a quick instrumental warmup the stars of the A show hit the stage, promptly setting off an explosión in the audience which was at least the equal of anything this reviewer has witnessed at contemporary rock and roll concerts- pandemonium, an uproar, an orgy of sound. And, of course, the O'Jays proved themselves worthy of every bit of the acclaim. The O'Jays' career as a hit recording group is so long and prolific that they didn't even have to use their earlier songs ("Back Stabbers," "Put Your Hands Together," "Love Train") to ulate a dynamite ten-tune show. They went with "Survival of the Fittest," "Got To Give The People What They Want," "Family Reunión," "Unity," the orgasmic "Let Me Make Love _ to You," "The Rich Get Richer." 'Livin' Fot The Weekend," "Stairway To Heaven," and reaay an all-time classic) "I Love Music." Each itarted an avalanche of screaming, cheering, and almost uncontrolled revelry whicli was an L ation in itself. The O'Jays' middle member, William Powell, was sick that night (he was ably replaced by understudy Sammy Strain, a former member of Little Anthony & the Impertáis), but the group was perfectly together in harmony and in step. Eddie Levert and Walter Williams were simply impeccable, and Sammy Strain did nut miss a lick. All in all, a great event for music lovers in Detroit, and onc we wish everyone could have shared with us. Taurus Productions is to bc commended tor presenting such a fine, tasteful show-a perfect sequel to itseailier Masonic concert with Billy Paul and MFSB.