Fats & Friends

(PR) It's the jam session of a lifetime as the three greatest rock On' roll piano players in the world share the stage for the first and only time, in Fats & Friends, set for release on DVD by Time Life on March 6. Shot at the Storyville nightclub in New Orleans, Fats & Friends features Fats Domino, Jerry Lee Lewis and Ray Charles--each a member of the Rock On' Roll Hall of Fame--strutting their stuff, individually and collectively. Also onstage are musical director/host Paul Shaffer, Rolling Stones guitarist Ron Wood and drummer extraordinaire Steve Jordan.

Fats & Friends was produced in 1986 for the trend-setting Cinemax series Sessions, but the show has been unseen and unavailable for over a decade. Executive producers Rick Lazes and David McBurnett teamed with director Len Del'Amico for what the New York Times called "a jubilant rock-and-roll piano summitS..Live, unfettered rock and roll--pure pleasure." Fats & Friends features Domino, Charles and Lewis each playing their biggest hits for a rollicking, over-the-top jam session. Paul Shaffer recalls in new interview footage shot exclusively for this DVD release that working with the distinct personalities of each of the piano legends was a huge challenge the concert. Shaffer recalls how nervous he was, playing on the same stage with his musical heroes. "It was so monumental to get this thing to happen," says Shaffer. "I don't think any of us knew how great it was until after it was done." The concert marks one of his greatest moments as a musical director, alongside his work on Late Show with David Letterman, the annual Rock N' Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony and the Closing Ceremonies of the 1996 Olympic Games.

For this first-time DVD release of the historic concert, nearly 60 minutes of bonus material has been added. We see behind the scenes shots of Fats, Jerry Lee and Ray during rehearsals, discussing and debating which songs to play during the end-of-concert jam. It is, literally, geniuses at work.

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