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Grammy Foundation Event and Epic After Dark

A TALE OF TWO PARTIES: Last night’s A Song Is Born event benefiting The Grammy Foundation at the Wilshire Ebell boasted performances by a handful of songwriting icons—as well as a number of gifted tunesmiths they’ve influenced. A few highlights: Jimmy Webb (“Wichita Lineman,” “Up, Up and Away”),  troubadour/ASCAP prexy Paul Williams (a cheeky medley of “Evergreen” and “Theme From The Love Boat”), J.D. Souther (“New Kid in Town,” sung with Joy Williams of The Civil Wars and Dan Wilson), Wilson (who sang “Someone Like You,” the smash he penned for Adele, and his Dixie Chicks hit "Not Ready to Make Nice"), Bonnie Raitt (who joined Tom Douglas and Allen Shamblin for their “I Can’t Make You Love Me” and then offered her own “Nick of Time”), Jeff Barry (“River Deep, Mountain High,” “Chapel of Love,” “Doo Wah Diddy”) and Kris Kristofferson (whose “Me and Bobby McGee” closed the night). Skylar Grey, Gavin DeGraw and John Rzeznik of Goo Goo Dolls were among the other performers. Speakers included NARAS chieftain Neil Portnow, the Foundation’s Kristen Madsen and Rusty Rueff, and Paul Williams. No beverages were served. This last was in marked contrast to the Epic After Dark party at Club DBA in West Hollywood, where waitresses in fishnet stockings served complimentary shots of Johnny Walker Gold. The beyond-packed crowd was also warmed up by cavorting models and DJ Cassidy before Epic ruler L.A. Reid—who came straight from a show by new signing Kongos and was greeted with a roar by the audience—grabbed the mic to introduce singer Kesington Kross, whose smoldering, rock-tinged R&B and considerable star presence had the whole room (and especially the girls at the lip of the stage) in a froth. (1/24p)

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