Tonight, Earth, Wind, & Fire is being honored at the 2019 Kennedy Center Honors.
The group made history by being the first black group to be inducted into the Kennedy Honors. Philip Bailey, Ralph Johnson, and Verdine White received the honor– the band’s founder, Maurice White, passed away in 2016.
In a statement to Billboard, Johnson shared, “You can’t play any Earth Wind & Fire songs without Maurice’s DNA being on it, so he’s always here and we’re always celebrating him and his vision… People are still coming together and having fun.”
As the group receives the accolade tonight and the event is broadcast on CBS at 8pm ET/PT, fans may be curious when they can check out Earth, Wind, and Fire live in concert. Read on to check out the band’s upcoming tour dates.
Upcoming Tour Dates
Friday, December 27, 2019: Turning Stone Resort Casino (Verona, NY)
Saturday, December 28, 2019: Mark G Etess Arena at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino (Atlantic City, NJ)
Wednesday, May 6, 2020: Pearl Concert Theater at Palms Casino Resort (Las Vegas, NV)
Friday, May 8, 2020: Pearl Concert Theater at Palms Casino Resort (Las Vegas, NV)
Saturday, May 9, 2020: Pearl Concert Theater at Palms Casino Resort (Las Vegas, NV)
Sunday, May 10, 2020: Comerica Theater (Phoenix, AZ)
Friday, May 15, 2020: Pearl Concert Theater at Palms Casino Resort (Las Vegas, NV)
Saturday, May 16, 2020: Pearl Concert Theater at Palms Casino Resort (Las Vegas, NV)
Saturday, May 30, 2020: Extraco Events Center (Waco, TX)
Purchase ticket here. As of now, those are the only dates listed for the band’s upcoming tour.
John Legend Will Help Perform Their Classic Hits
Tonight, John Legend, Ne-Yo, the Jonas Brothers, and Cynthia Erivo will perform the group’s classic hits. Although it’s unclear exactly what will be performed until the event is broadcast, some of the groups’ biggest songs include “Devotion”, “Shining Star”, and “That’s the Way of the World.” Over the course of the band’s history, they have received 17 Grammy nominations, four American Music Awards, and have been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Vocal Group Hall of Fame.
Bailey recently said in a statement, “There are so many more African-American acts that are deserving and perhaps this can be the first of many more to come,” said Bailey. In a separate statement, Kennedy Center president Deborah Rutter told Billboard, “We don’t think about it that way. We want to make sure the slate is diverse, we want to make sure the art forms are diverse, but we didn’t say, ‘We’ve never had an African-American band before.’”
Each year the Kennedy Center Honors award those in the arts for their lifetime contributions to American culture. The honors have been presented each year since 1978. Other honorees this year include composer and conductor Michael Tilson Thomas, Sally Field, Linda Ronstadt, and the show Sesame Street.
According to Billboard, this year’s ceremony features a number of politicians, from Cabinet members Defense Secretary Mark Esper to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. More than 40 members of Congress were also present.
Be sure to tune into the event on CBS at 8pm ET/PT.