MusiCares honors Bob Dylan; President Jimmy Carter, Springsteen, CSN pay tribute

LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 06: Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter (L) and former First Lady Rosalynn Carter attend the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images) Former President Jimmy Carter and wife Rosalynn attended the MusiCares gala. Carter was set to present Dylan with an award. Photo: Getty Images.
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LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 06: Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter (L) and former First Lady Rosalynn Carter attend the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images) Former President Jimmy Carter and wife Rosalynn attended the MusiCares gala. Carter was set to present Dylan with an award. Photo: Getty Images.

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

BY MELISSA RUGGIERI

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LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 06: Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter (L) and former First Lady Rosalynn Carter attend the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images) Former President Jimmy Carter and wife Rosalynn attended the MusiCares gala. Carter was set to present Dylan with an award. Photo: Getty Images.

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 06: Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter (L) and former First Lady Rosalynn Carter attend the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images) Former President Jimmy Carter and wife Rosalynn attended the MusiCares gala. Carter was set to present Dylan with an award. Photo: Getty Images.
caption arrowCaption
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 06: Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter (L) and former First Lady Rosalynn Carter attend the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images) Former President Jimmy Carter and wife Rosalynn attended the MusiCares gala. Carter was set to present Dylan with an award. Photo: Getty Images.

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

LOS ANGELES -- It takes a special event to entice a guest list ranging from former President Jimmy Carter to Victoria Justice.

Both walked the red carpet prior to Friday night's MusiCares benefit, which this year – it's 25th – honored Bob Dylan as its Person of the Year.

Proceeds from the show and silent auction will benefit the MusiCares organization, which provides aid to musicians having financial, medical or personal need.

The concert was set to feature a spate of musical acts – among them Bruce Springsteen, Crosby, Stills and Nash, Alanis Morissette, Beck, John Mellencamp, Derek Trucks and Susan Tedeschi, Bonnie Raitt and Sheryl Crow – paying musical tribute to Dylan.

President Carter was expected to present Dylan with the Person of the Year Award.

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attends the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. Gaga loves her Tony! Photo: Getty Images.

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

attends the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. Gaga loves her Tony! Photo: Getty Images.
caption arrowCaption
attends the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. Gaga loves her Tony! Photo: Getty Images.

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

But a couple of hours before show time, many of the participants – including the dynamic duo of Tony Bennett and an affectionate Lady Gaga - hit the red carpet to talk about Dylan and their own projects. As per usual, many of the artists skipped any talking and went straight to the photo ops.

Here is what some had to say.

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attends the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. The Band Perry sent their love to Mama Jan Smith. Photo: Getty Images.

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

attends the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. The Band Perry sent their love to Mama Jan Smith. Photo: Getty Images.
caption arrowCaption
attends the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. The Band Perry sent their love to Mama Jan Smith. Photo: Getty Images.

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

The Band Perry admitted they are psyched about playing on the Stevie Wonder tribute concert, which tapes Tuesday in L.A. and will air on Feb. 16.

There will likely be a phone call exchanged with “Mama” Jan Smith, the renowned Atlanta-based vocal coach who has worked with the siblings since the early days of their career.

Kimberly Perry laughed that she and Mama Jan emailed on the way to the MusiCares event (about whether or not Smith was in L.A. and “something food-related”). The group looks to her as a calming presence.

“We always have a tendency to have a lot of adrenaline before a big performance, so when Jan is with us, it’s her job to say, ‘just chill out,’” Kimberly said.

Added Neil, “Chill out and do jumping jacks – all at the same time!”

Kimberly noted that Smith’s advice always lingers.

“Some of the greatest things Jan ever taught us were the actual technical places in our voices, so if we’re ever in a panic, we know where to pull from.”

Neil leaned in one more time with a smile: “We love our Mama Jan.”

The Band Perry expects to release a new album this fall, followed by a tour.

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attends the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. Susan Tedeschi and Derek Trucks said they plan to play Chastain this summer. Photo: Getty Images.

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

attends the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. Susan Tedeschi and Derek Trucks said they plan to play Chastain this summer. Photo: Getty Images.
caption arrowCaption
attends the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. Susan Tedeschi and Derek Trucks said they plan to play Chastain this summer. Photo: Getty Images.

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

Derek Trucks and his radiant wife Susan Tedeschi talked a little Dylan – "He's one of my all-time heroes," Tedeschi said – and also their upcoming tour, which will include Georgia native Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings on some dates.

“We were asked to put some kind of tour together and they were high on our list,” Tedeschi said. “We thought it would be a great fit musically for our audiences.”

Trucks said that the Tedeschi Trucks Band tour with the Black Crowes in 2013 was so much fun, that he and Tedeschi started thinking about “what other real bands are out there?” Doyle Bramhall II will also join TTB on the road.

“It’s one of those shows that we would go to, which is how we gauge it,” Trucks said, then added with a laugh, “And then we realized we have some pretty eclectic taste! But the Dap-Kings, that’s a serious band.”

While nothing has been formalized, Trucks and Tedeschi said they expect to play Chastain Park Amphitheatre this summer.

Ace musicians Benmont Tench and Kenny Aronoff walked the carpet shortly before assuming their duties in the house band for the show.

Tench, the longtime keyboardist for Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, said preparation for playing in the house band at a Dylan event involves, “Very little rehearsal and a whole lot of living long enough to have Bob’s songs seep into your being.”

Tench attributes Dylan’s longevity as an artist thusly: “He’s someone who has something on his mind and chooses the words carefully and well with how he says it. He’s also a really good melodist. ..He was a huge influence on the Heartbreakers and it was a real thrill that we got to play with him for a couple of years. That changed everybody’s playing.”

Aronoff, one of the most familiar names in rock drumming, said Dylan “was on my record player all the time. He was cool. I played with John Mellencamp for 17 years and he and John are very close and John was heavily influenced by him; he’s been in my life forever.”

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LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 06: Musician Don Was attends the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images) Don Was brought his ace skills as a bandleader to the event. Proper footwear not a requirement. Photo: Getty Images.

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 06: Musician Don Was attends the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images) Don Was brought his ace skills as a bandleader to the event. Proper footwear not a requirement. Photo: Getty Images.
caption arrowCaption
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 06: Musician Don Was attends the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images) Don Was brought his ace skills as a bandleader to the event. Proper footwear not a requirement. Photo: Getty Images.

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

Don Was, who broke out his best flip-flops for his role as musical director of the house band, served as the musical director at last year's tribute concerts at the Fox Theatre for Gregg Allman and Lynyrd Skynyrd . He'll commandeer upcoming events celebrating Jerry Garcia and the Neville Brothers and agreed with the whispered idea that Alan Jackson would be a suitable star for another Georgia-related show.

Was also talked about his lifelong respect for Dylan: “ I’ve been a fan since I was a teenager and he started making records. I think he’s the greatest of them all. He elevated the whole game of artistry and songwriting. He’s the world’s most sophisticated bluesman.”

Albanian songstress Bleona – already a star in several countries -- is readying her April debut album, and talked about collaborating with Timbaland.

“I was on tour in Germany in 2008 when he came out with the song “The Way I Are” (with Atlanta’s Keri Hilson) and I was obsessed with the song and I turned around and told my team, ‘I want to go to America and work with Timbaland’ and everyone thought I was crazy. But you put things in the universe and you work very hard and your dreams come true. We have three singles together on new album coming in April.”

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LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 06: Actress Bleona Qereti attends the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images) Nope, not that dress. Photo: Getty Images.

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 06: Actress Bleona Qereti attends the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images) Nope, not that dress. Photo: Getty Images.
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LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 06: Actress Bleona Qereti attends the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images) Nope, not that dress. Photo: Getty Images.

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

Bleona caused a fashion commotion at the American Music Awards red carpet in November when she arrived in a see-through outfit (you can see the NSFW pics here ). She donated the buzzy dress to MusiCares for its silent auction.

The singer, who will return to her home country to be a judge on “X-Factory Albania” for four months, said it’s been “a humbling experience” trying to crack the American market.

“It was a challenge that I wanted to prove to myself first and then everybody else that if I went to another country where no one knew me, would I still be able to be Belona? And the answer is yes, if you work hard for it.

Crosby, Stills and Nash legend Stephen Stills frequently invoked the sentiment of Marshawn Lynch – "I'm just here so I don't get fined" – when he couldn't hear a reporter's question over the din of shouting photographers a foot away or when he didn't want to elaborate on answers to any CSN-related questions. But Stills did express his admiration for Dylan's music and noted,  "It taught me, along with some great English teachers, how to dig into some poetry."

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LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 06: Singer Louise Goffin attends the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images) Louise Goffin's new album pays tribute to her dad. Photo: Getty Images.

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 06: Singer Louise Goffin attends the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images) Louise Goffin's new album pays tribute to her dad. Photo: Getty Images.
caption arrowCaption
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 06: Singer Louise Goffin attends the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images) Louise Goffin's new album pays tribute to her dad. Photo: Getty Images.

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

Carole King's daughter, Louise Goffin, talked about her new album, "Apple on Fire," so named because the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

“The songs are really special on it. There are Gerry Goffin lyrics on there, some songs I co-wrote with my father that have never been released,” she said.

Goffin said she loves the Broadway musical about her parents' life, "Beautiful: The Carole King Musical," which is heading out on tour and will play Atlanta in May 2016.

Goffin said she “didn’t know what to expect at all, but it was a really amazing experience… Particularly amazing was going backstage and hanging with all of these people pretending to be my relatives!”

Orianthi, along with musical partner and beau Richie Sambora and musician/arranger/composer Michael Bearden, said they've been working on songs for about a year, have six recorded and a "a lot more" to do.

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LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 06: (L-R) Musicians Richie Sambora, Orianthi, and Michael Bearden attend the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images) Richie Sambora, Orianthi and Michael Bearden are working on a soul-rock stew. Photo: Getty Images.

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 06: (L-R) Musicians Richie Sambora, Orianthi, and Michael Bearden attend the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images) Richie Sambora, Orianthi and Michael Bearden are working on a soul-rock stew. Photo: Getty Images.
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LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 06: (L-R) Musicians Richie Sambora, Orianthi, and Michael Bearden attend the 25th anniversary MusiCares 2015 Person Of The Year Gala honoring Bob Dylan at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The annual benefit raises critical funds for MusiCares' Emergency Financial Assistance and Addiction Recovery programs. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images) Richie Sambora, Orianthi and Michael Bearden are working on a soul-rock stew. Photo: Getty Images.

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

Credit: Melissa Ruggieri

She praised Bearden for adding a different element to the music she and Sambora have crafted, explaining it as, “very commercial, but it has a lot of soul in it. It’s about the lyric, about the songs, writing songs that are going to connect.”

Orianthi reached out to grasp Sambora’s hand as she said, “I love him, he’s the best. I’ve learned a lot, songwriter-wise, from him as well. He’s an amazing lyricist, an amazing guitarist. A lot of people don’t know what a great singer he is.”

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