It wouldn’t be the Fourth of July without a little country flare. And that’s exactly what went down at VH1’s Philly 4th of July Jam on Thursday. Hunter Hayes set off fireworks with his live renditions of “I Want Crazy” and “Somebody’s Heartbreak.” Before his show ended, fans were treated to a cover of The Police’s “Every Little Thing She Does is Magic.”
Music lovers gathered all the way down Benjamin Franklin Parkway in front of the Philadelphia Museum of Art to watch artists like Ne-Yo, Grace Potter and J. Cole take control of Independence Day. The Roots served as the night’s house band and backed up Hunter on a red, white and blue-glowing stage.
In his Southern charisma, Hayes spewed his true-love wisdom to the crowd. “There’s all kinds of rules for love; I say let it do what it does,” he sings in “I Want Crazy.” “There’s no such thing as wild enough. Baby, we just think too much.” Hayniacs took the advice to heart, letting loose and dancing in the summer heat.
Hunter, with his hair slicked back instead of spiked up, launched into “Somebody’s Heartbreak.” As he switched guitars, he prepared for the song he “just loves to jam to.” So, with ?uestlove and the crew behind him, he whipped out some intricate guitar riffs in a John Mayer-style. (Maybe Mayer taught him a thing or two backstage, as he also played the Philly Jam.)
One of Hayes’ favorite songs, “like, ever,” is “Every Little Thing She Does is Magic,” originally done by The Police in 1981. He took the tune as an opportunity to close out his set in a fun, celebratory way — with, of course, a twist of romance.