This July 3 marks the 12th annual Let Freedom Rock Fest for WMGK (102.9) and, as always, the musical fireworks will be poppin’. Over the years, this annual celebration of our nation’s freedom has been staged at various venues, including Cooper River Park in Pennsauken and X-Finity Live in Philadelphia. This year, we return to The Susquehanna Bank Center. From America to Pat Benatar to Joan Jett to Cheap Trick to Peter Frampton and so many others, MGK has always brought in top-notch concert performances. This year, the bar is raised further with Heart, newly inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, along with Jason Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Experience and MGK House Band, the Sofa Kings.
The combination of Heart and Jason Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Experience is pure genius. Heart’s Wilson sisters have often been compared to Led Zeppelin, due to Ann’s soaring vocals and Nancy’s stellar guitar playing. Additionally, they’ve often incorporated Zep songs into their repertoire, and this show allows them stretch the notion even further while Jason Bonham pays tribute to his dad John Bonham (RIP Bonzo!) on the drums.
Doors to the Susquehanna Bank Center will open at 6 p.m., and the horn-driven Sofa Kings will kick things off at 6:50. Afterwards, Jason Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Experience will present a blistering 45 minute set of Led Zep songs, and then Heart takes the stage for a 90-minute set that will include songs spanning their almost 40 year career. Although Ann does the majority of the singing, Nancy gets to step up to the mic for a turn on the Elton John’s “I Need You to Turn To.” Still high-kicking and spinning around the stage, she shows no signs of slowing down.
Often, concert-goers head to the exits for the encore to get a jump on getting out of the parking lot. Don’t do it! If you leave early, you will miss the best part of the show. Immediately after Heart wraps up their set, Jason Bonham returns to the stage to join them for “The Only In Your Dreams Encore,” a 40-minute-or-so encore of Zeppelin classics that will culminate in an explosive “Stairway to Heaven.” Seriously, you will never forgive yourself if you miss this.
Also, don’t miss the MGK live broadcast and free barbecue in the SBC parking lot from 2-7 p.m. with Andre Gardner!
Wednesday, July 3. 6 p.m. Susquehanna Bank Center, 1 Market St., Camden, NJ. $20.13 and up, $50/4 lawn seats. Visit ticketmaster.com for details.