Martha Reeves and the Vandellas will be the talent for the 2017 Evening Under the Stars


AIDS Assistance Program – Food Samaritans (AAP) proudly announces that Martha Reeves & the Vandellas will be the headline entertainment for the 24th annual Evening Under the Stars gala, to be held on Saturday, May 6, 2017 at the O’Donnell Golf Club in Palm Springs. Martha Reeves & the Vandellas are an iconic Motown group that had, in their heyday, more than 26 hits and were a constant presence on the music charts, as well as on television and in top music venues across the US and abroad. Ten of their songs reached the top ten of the Billboard R&B singles chart, and two were R&B number one hits.  Six of their songs were Top Ten Pop Hits on the Billboard Hot 100. They are most known for their major hits “Heat Wave,” “Dancing In The Street,” “Jimmy Mack,” and “Nowhere To Run.”

“Martha Reeves is one of music’s most beloved and acclaimed female singers,” said Mark Anton, CEO/Executive Director of AAP – Food Samaritans. “Evening Under the Stars is not only a great fundraiser, it’s also a great show. Our audience will love watching Martha Reeves and the Vandellas perform on stage, and I look forward to seeing everyone on their feet as they dance down memory lane to these beloved Motown hits.”

Evening Under the Stars gala festivities will begin with a ‘quintessentially Palm Springs’ sunset cocktail hour on the grounds of the O’Donnell Golf Club against a backdrop of the majestic San Jacinto Mountains, widely regarded as one of the most festive cocktail receptions of the season. A short awards program will recognize a few inspirational honorees, followed by a delicious dinner, and a performance by Martha & the Vandellas.  After their show, dancing will continue with DJ Jerry Bonham on the main stage followed by an amazing fireworks display. Tickets for the benefit, priced at $395 and $500 per person, are available for purchase and individual VIP seats and sponsorships are also available. To attend or for more information, call 760-325-8481 or visit aidsassistance.org.

About Martha Reeves: The Ultimate Motown Diva

Martha Reeves has been a Motown icon for decades.  She and the Vandellas first performed with the likes of The Miracles, Stevie Wonder, the Supremes, and Marvin Gaye on the first Motown Review. They sang behind Marvin and soon hit the charts with their own trifecta: “Come and Get These Memories,” “Love is Like a Heat Wave,” and “Quicksand.”

With the unmistakable voice that helped define “the sound of young America,” Reeves reigns today as one of music’s most beloved and acclaimed female singers. Whether performing solo or with the Vandellas, Martha Reeves continues to heat up clubs, concert stages and music festivals, thrilling audiences across the globe, and always leaving them dancing. Reeves’ hits are legendary: They include the gospel-tinged “Nowhere to Run,” the classic soul favorite “My Baby Loves Me,” the pop anthem “Jimmy Mack,” and her signature, “Dancing In The Street.”

She has counted talents as diverse as James Brown and Beverly Sills among her singing partners. Robin Williams spun “Nowhere to Run” in Good Morning, Vietnam. Her version of the Van Morrison rocker, “Wild Night” was featured on the Thelma and Louise movie soundtrack. The boys in The Boys In The Band and Whoopi Goldberg in Sister Act 2 partied to “Heat Wave.” Everyone from Mick Jagger and David Bowie, the Mamas & the Papas, Dusty Springfield and the Grateful Dead has performed “Dancing In The Street.” Singers such as Adele, Amy Winehouse, Florence Welch, and Jennifer Hudson sing her praises. A few years ago, Will Smith and the producers of the movie Hitch mined Martha’s vault of unreleased recordings to find her sublime “It’s Easy (To Fall In Love With a Guy Like You).” Melanie Fiona sampled “Jimmy Mack” in her hit, “Please Don’t Go (Cry Baby).”

Reeves is the recipient of the Dinah Washington Award, a Rhythm n’ Blues Foundation Pioneer Award, a Black Woman in Publishing Legends Award, and has been inducted in the Alabama, Soul, Rock and Roll, and Vocal Group halls of fame. “Dancing in the Street” has been entered into the Library of Congress Registry of Historical Recordings and the Grammy Hall of Fame. Martha Reeves & the Vandellas are listed among Rolling Stone magazine’s “100 Immortal Artists” and Martha herself was named one of the “30 Top Lead Singers of all Time.”

ABOUT JERRY BONHAM

Jerry Bonham’s love of music and career as a DJ began in Minneapolis, Minnesota in 1976. His path has led him to spin disco hits at the Ice Palace in New York City and on Fire Island, then to San Francisco in 1989 where he played at Dreamland, Colossus (originally in the legendary Trocadero location) and later 1015 Folsom, Pleasuredome, and Spundae.  He currently resides in Denver, and continues to delight fans at ‘Remember the Party’ events in San Francisco, Flagging in the Park at the AIDS Memorial Grove in Golden Gate Park, and other special events such as Evening Under the Stars. 

ABOUT EVENING UNDER THE STARS

Over the years, Evening Under the Stars has featured the talents of a wide variety of entertainers. In 2014, an electrifying performance by the First Ladies of Disco – Linda Clifford, France Joli, Evelyn “Champagne” King, Maxine Nightingale, Pamala Stanley, Anita Ward, Martha Wash, and the ladies formerly of Chic: Alfa Anderson, Luci Martin, and Norma Jean – had everyone on their feet with an amazing night of 70’s dance music. Over the years, headliners Nell Carter, Tyne Daly, Melissa Manchester, Jane Oliver, Lorna Luft, Bea Arthur, Barry Manilow, Nancy Wilson, Lily Tomlin and the entire remaining cast of Laugh In, Mary Wilson of The Supremes, Pink Martini, The B-52s, The Go-Go’s, Cyndi Lauper, Darlene Love and the iconic Village People have all taken the stage in support of this very worthy cause.